Timeless

I agonised over Paula’s b&w Sunday theme for days, wondering how on earth I could encapsulate “timeless”. I was confused, partly because I’m living in a city that can claim some antiquity, although a lot of it was only rebuilt 70 years ago. Having seen an exhibition of Warsaw’s resurrection after 80% of it was reduced to rubble by the Germans in WW2, I could perhaps explore the timeless spirit of people who survive appalling losses, a spirit seen over and over again in the brutal parade of the centuries.

But what my mind kept returning to was the timelessness of the relationship between grandmothers and grand-daughters: the loving bond that develops between them; the skills that are passed on through that love; and the absorbed concentration that accompanies the bonding. So the image I offer is a photo my daughter took. Maja and I are reattaching legs to an alphabetapillar, a gift from the Australian aunt and therefore another manifestation of the timelessness of connection between the generations of women in a family. (My grandson was still asleep during the surgery, or my reflections may not have been so female-focused.) 

Maja has not handled a needle before, or taken part in the mending process. Such learning stretches back through a long line of woman passing on what used to be women’s skills. I think of basket weaving in Australian Aboriginal communities; lacemaking in Croatian families; ikat weaving in Ecuador: those things UNESCO calls “intangible cultural heritage”.

Am I stretching a point to connect a bit of toy mending in Puławska St with timeless women’s traditions?

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About morselsandscraps

A retired Australian who spends a lot of time in Warsaw, and blogs as a way of life.
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14 Responses to Timeless

  1. Suzanne says:

    What a great shot. The intense caring look on your face and the delight on the little girl’s face are timeless indeed. What a beautiful child she is.

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  2. Paula says:

    Maja is a big girl now. I would not have recognised her. Thank you for the entry.

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  3. Pingback: Black & White Sunday: Timeless | Lost in Translation

  4. desleyjane says:

    Not stretching at all. It’s a beautifully poignant photo. I love it.

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  5. Lucid Gypsy says:

    It’s the most lovely timeless photo, especially in black and white. The relationship we have with our sons is different, but no less special than with our daughters and their daughters. To me there is something intangibly precious and important between the female lines, perhaps because we are the vessels. Maja is at the age when she’s absorbing so much and she’s enjoying the first steps of this traditional craft. Of course Jas can learn how to mend as well x 🙂 x

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  6. restlessjo says:

    Maja the seamstress, and Babcia 🙂 🙂 I love it.

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  7. pommepal says:

    A beautiful interpretation of a difficult theme.

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  8. findingnyc says:

    The photo is beautiful Meg, as are both of you! I think this fits so well within the timeless women’s traditions theme. Your granddaughter will treasure these memories forever – I know that firsthand, as I still have memories of doing similar things with my grandmother when I was about 4 or 5 years old. First she taught me to use a needle and thread, and I practiced with scraps of fabric left over from the clothes that she made. Later it was embroidery and eventually crochet. Every time I do any mending or other needlework now, it reminds me of her.

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    • I didn’t know either of my grandmothers: I feel that as a great loss. The closest I got to my maternal grandmother was letters written by her brother from France and Belgium in WW1 and I treasure the glimpses I get through their relationship.

      Liked by 1 person

      • findingnyc says:

        I’m sorry that you never knew your grandmothers – that makes it even more meaningful that you are having the time with your grandchildren now, I’m sure. How special that you have those letters though – I know from some of my family’s old letters that I’ve learned a lot about family members I didn’t know personally.

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