Josepina (The Third Book in the trilogy of the Baretta family.)
America – I love the dream of what you could be and always believed I should play some small part in trying to shape you to keep the memory alive of justice, liberty and your immigrant history.
Many have come to your shores with only a suitcase tied with string, a rosary, perhaps a favorite vase wrapped in newspaper, leaving a weeping mother behind. Her tears are invisible to us, but I wonder, how did she let her children go to a strange new country, knowing she may never see them again? Did she trust you would treat them tenderly – find comfort in knowing they would have enough to eat?
I imagine her heart continued to weep and the only prayer she had was to plead, over and over, bargaining with her God, down on her knees, pleading for her child’s safety.
Josepina, my great grandmother was just one of those mothers, standing on the shores of the Adriatic sea, watching her daughter, Constanza board the small boat that would take her to Bari to board a ship to America, never to see her again. This is her story.