Caruso by Aislinn Rossi

Tonight my Grandmother is dancing to the Italian station
on her radio. Tonight,
I am letting the words of il caruso sink into my throat
although I do not understand them.
I know, only distantly,
that the song is about the sea.

You see, tonight- we’ve set the TV to mute, so we don’t have to hear
the way a politician speaks on the news, about a new wave of migrants
trying to make their homes here- these days

Nonna is so thin that she’s almost translucent,
but tonight, that just means I can see the steel beneath her skin
when she smiles, gentle,
and says I hope they are well. More...

Positive Ageing Project

Everyone has their story. So too Italian women who came to Australia in the 1950’s and 1960’s. These women’s stories are very similar, and yet each one is unique.

They all made the long sea journey from Italy to Australia. They all left behind parents, siblings, friends, not knowing when or if they would ever see them again. Some came with family, some with husbands. Many came alone to a husband they had not seen in years or to a fiancé they hardly knew. Once here they all confronted a new country, a new culture and language and the imperative to adapt, survive.