all souls – 20091st entry – in memorium

November the Second has always been a melancholy day. My first memory of this Day of the Dead is going with my family to the cemetery in Aprigliano. I was with my parents and someone gave us a ride. As a little kid, the ride felt long. On the way, I remember seeing a road-side memorium and I remember the tall cypress trees that ringed the cemetery. (The trees have been such an enduring memory that at one point I tried to plant a cypress in my backyard. The grower at the greenhouse discouraged me, saying this part of the country did not have the right climate for cypress. Pittsburgh is too wet for this genus of tree.)

The other thing I remember from this long ago time is the Famiglia Martini Ferrari monument. It was the most notable grave site in a country cemetery. All my relatives were in small brick-and-mortar graves. I’ve kept this image, of a woman reclining with a set of books as her pillow, in my mind all my years. And when I was back in Aprigliano in 2006 and we had our own car and we could go to the cemetery, this is one of the first graves I went looking for. I also discovered that the cemetery in my mind was now the “old section.” There is some creeping of the new in the back of the monument. Cinder blocks were not in use back in the early 50’s for mausoleums. In memory it stood alone dwarfing everything around it.

Rose took this shot. It was before I began to pay attention to photography.

The monument in my mind is all white marble, there is no staining, no water puddles on the top.