My granddaughter enjoys visiting cemeteries, so we return to the Jewish cemetery in the afternoon of a sunny day. I tend not to do much in the afternoon, and I realise what I’m missing as the 2 pm light slants onto the snow that is often in untrodden ankle-deep drifts and across the tottering tombstones. I’m easy on my feet when I hear that loud satisfying “crunch” respond to each step I take.
The cemetery is picturesque and records a Jewish history stretching back long before the Holocaust. But within minutes I’m reminded of that horror by the symbolic family grave just inside the gate.
Once I’m amongst the old graves I feel free to enjoy their decaying beauty with the same pleasure I feel in the Nerrigundah graveyard, or the Moruya graveyard, or old roadside graveyards in the Australian outback. I acknowledge death and lives past, and enjoy the way other people acknowledge these things.
For previous visits to different parts of the Jewish cemetery, see here.