This is a song I wrote about my grandmother's life as I heard about it through stories from my mother. My mother's parents were Polish, coming to Canada in the 1920s.

Click here to download an audio file of the song.

by Ruth Anderson

Maria, Maria, oft I’ve heard of you
Tales from your daughter of joy and of blue
The threads of your deeds, with words brightly sewn
By the lips of my mother, your life weaves through my own

There were the years in the homeland, Joe was rich you were poor
You had to struggle to get married, his parents wrath you did endure
His father said no work will you find in this land
And not a penny will you ever see come from this hand
You both journeyed to the New World, Joe went first while you trained
And as a midwife you earned your passage using skills you had gained


Over seas and over prairies, there was no looking back
You joined your Joe, now a farmer, in a rail road tie shack
The thirties came, blowing dust where once you tilled soil
There were hard times, and there were lean times, but you made friends true and loyal
What you had you shared with neighbours, birthing hope and good will
You lived an outspoken courage that inspires me still


At the dusk of your years as I verged on my teens
You chose to die with your body, not to live on machines
With quiet, and with family, you went on your way
And there’s a peace in the air when mother speaks of that day


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