The Poetry and Prose of John Newmark

Guns Fired

Rural Transylvania, 1910. A gun fired: One child maimed; One child entered a depression-fueled starvation he never exited; One child, my maternal grandfather, stood witness.

Philippines, 1945. A gun fired: One soldier cleaning his rifle; One soldier entered a hospital he never exited; His brother, my paternal grandfather, stood Kaddish.

Neither event changed my DNA, but both influenced how I was raised, who I became.

Copyright John Newmark. All Rights Reserved.

Divergent Yet Intersecting

Transylvania, Holland, Alsace, Poland, England, Germany, Lithuania and Texas all contain soil upon which ancestors dwelt; Farmers, beekeepers, shepherds, tailors, blacksmiths, salesmen, clergy, judges, and doctors.

As I research ancestral lines I discover some ancestors celebrated Hanuka, others Christmas, and still others the Green Corn Ceremony; Jewish, Methodist Episcopalian, Puritan, Christian Scientist, Mennonite, Choctaw, and Cherokee.

I shall never find the records for my distant ancestors who either came to this continent by crossing the Land Bridge, or originally emerged from the Nanih Waiya in Mississippi.

I delve through obituaries, microfilm depositories, internet databases; I interview relatives, and rummage through attics.

What I find doesn't alter who I am; It illuminates the divergent, yet still intersecting paths of my ancestors.

Copyright John Newmark. All Rights Reserved.