Legion. An amalgamated journal.


Part 1

It took six men to hang my Uncle Frank, sometimes seven. They only hung him once, so it was one or the other, but my father likes to vary it in the telling. I prefer six. Seven’s too Biblical. Either way, Frank managed to take two of them with him. It was the British who hung him. He was an Irish freedom fighter, my father says, with a fishing boat and a farm. He was my great-great-uncle, actually, the last of our family to die in Donegal. The rest were warned and – Two if by sea! – they sailed for America. Frank wouldn’t run or else he overslept. No one knows the truth.

So we washed onshore in Old New York – we wretched refuse—and tipped our hats to Liberty – we huddled masses yearning to breathe free. The Lady passed the chalice and we threw our heads back and opened our throats and let her flow into our blood. Blood is thicker than water and here I am the product. I am breathing in and out in Boston and I am not writing Why England Slept and I am not writing Ulysees. I am writing “Dear Kitty” and dropping my r’s and someday, Papa, you will find this. You will survive us all.

Maryellen McGowan

February 14th, 2008 at 5:05 am

But perhaps you disagree

No responses so far

The room is, as yet, filled with smoke and apprehension.