People Inside of Pictures ©2020 Stephen A Schuster

 

People inside of pictures
Pictures inside of frames
These are my family fixtures
All their faces, all their names


Mothers with their husbands
Fathers with their wives
All these kids and cousins
That make up these family lives


Home is where I’m going
Home is where I’ll run
To meet those generations
I’ll see in the world to come


Immigrants with pushcarts
Ambitious for their sons
Trying to make a new start
Like they were the chosen ones


Some choose grand professions
Some work with their hands
All had great intentions, sometimes
God had other plans


Home is where I’m going
Home is where I’ll run
To meet those generations
I’ll see in the world to come


People inside of pictures
Pictures inside of frames
These are my family scriptures
Every story that remains


These are my constellations
See how they shine
Upon this congregation
That makes up my family line


Home is where I’m going
Home is where I’ll run
To meet those generations
I’ll see in the world to come
I’ll see them when we’re reunited
in the world to come

 

The walls of the living room in my parents' home in Seattle, WA were covered by a crowded mishmash of framed photographs of various members my family, going back six generations to Russia and Eastern Europe. So growing up, I was keenly aware of the daily presence of my ancestors, and these pictures always kept their stories and memories alive for my brothers and me.