View from Atop Mount Herzl
The State built Yad Vashem in a winding
from the museum,
see the glowing, the white hills of Jerusalem,
and a sun a confirmation.
In 1945 my great-grandfather traveled from Brooklyn
to Poland. Dr. Stern
with a suitcase of surgical supplies and a letter
from Celia in his breast-pocket. Maybe
he saw in the bumps of emaciated rib-bone the white
hills of Jerusalem? Nonlinear conclusions.
Moreso, he must have felt a lacking:
Filling in, the tub in the bathroom of my mother’s
first home overfilling
soapy suds on a purple-tiled floor & and young laughter
I think about how his serotonin wavered,
more like airport highways than white hills.
I know he kept a garden
in his Queens home
but cried into mirror glass in old age.
I don’t speak Hebrew but the shema
reminds me of my own
ribcage—smooth flat fatty skin,
the topography of the tri-state.
Moreso I occasionally lay on bathroom tile cold & wonder purple
Isabel Owen is a sophomore English (creative writing) and history double major with a minor in Latin American studies at SUNY Geneseo. She likes to post poems in unexpected places and pretend that she didn’t do it, even though everyone knows that she did.