POEMS


Kenmore

Bubbie and Zadie live on a street named Kenmore…They are very old, and dress in dark clothes all the time

I think one of their neighbors makes vacuum cleaners and washing machines somewhere on the block…but I’m not sure just where…

Grandpa never smiles, but Grandma does sometimes….

They live upstairs in a compartment building…with three neighbors under the same big roof, with different front doors in a dark hallway

The hallway smells like something maybe burning in Grandma Ida’s kitchen…I don’t like the smell and hold my nose…

Downstairs is Grandpa Abraham’s office…he used to be a skin doctor…now it’s all closed up, he doesn’t work anymore

One time I snuck inside…it was dusty with a bunch of mail on the floor by the front door…there’s a scary room with a big chair like at my dentist’s office…and a bunch of scary metal furniture and stuff…it reminds me of Frankenstein’s place

I hate the dentist, and Frankenstein is really creepy

Papa and I go over to Bubbie and Zadie’s compartment…it seems, almost every weekend…Papa works there…doing stuff with tools and paint brushes…Mama’s never happy when we leave the house to go there

I don’t like to go there so much…it’s boring and smells funny in the living room too…but not like the hallway…different

My Grandparents collect rubber bands, that if you stretch to long, they break and hurt your fingers…there are lots of paper clips and newspapers with letters written we don’t practice in kindergarten…I don’t understand them…they look like the ones on the matzos box

They always have fat people singing on the radio, but not in English…I don’t know how I know they are fat…I can’t see them…but somehow I know their big

I like my Grandma’s chicken soup…but I hate the stinky fish that Grandpa Abe takes out of the glass jar…the meat we usually eat there is brown and tough, if they had a doggie, I would sneak it under the table like I do at home with Mama’s meatloaf…

I never understand what happens when we eat at their dinner table…Grandpa is always quiet in the daytime, but at super, he gets mad and yells…it’s in a different language…but not the same as the fat singers…

Bubbie always says after he yells: “It’s shander for the goyem”…on our way home I asked my Papa what that means

He told me…It’s a shame the neighbors have to listen to Zadie yell about the camps in Poland…he always complains the numbers on his arm still hurt