Wednesday, March 29, 2006
In Colombia the sky is a blue that is almost obscene, it is so beautiful. So blue that no one in the country has eyes that blue, because it would be impossible to compete with the color. My beloved, beautiful grandmother adored that blue. Her name was Russian. Her father, a wastrel, a third born son and a reader of a great many novels named her after some character from a Russian story. She suffered greatly. She had been married off at 15 to a man much older. In their wedding picture he is leaning against the wall because he didn't have the strength to hold himself up. He was cruel, in the way weak men are cruel, and their marriage was never happy. She wanted many children, but was blessed with only one, my mother. I have a suspicion that she was the product of some small affair, some little glimpse of happiness, that my grandma had. My Mami, who had a Russian name as well, was tiny and delicate and snow white and not at all like the other children in the family, who were robust and indian. She was smart and bright. She was so pretty she was chosen almost every year of her girlhood to be the one to dress the Madonna of the sea.
This particular Madonna had been rescued from the Caribbean. She had been on a ship from spain that sank and she washed ashore at Puerto Colombia, naked, the sea having eaten her gown. The people of Puerto rescued her, took her naked form from the beach, washed her, and clothed her beautiful body in new robes. It became a tradition, that every year the young girls would remove her old robes and dress her in new ones. She was a sacred doll, and particularly beautiful because she had alabaster skin, and black black hair. Real Hair, that somehow managed to survive her ravaging by the sea. My mother was one of the girls who would sew for her, clean her, and dress her for her annual parade around the town square. The Madonna still lives in the tiny broken down church in Puerto Colombia. The town is in ruins, but the black haired Virgin is there, raising her limpid eyes to the population that adores her.
(A start of a story)
Snark by LolaDiana at 7:19 PM