The Menorahs of My Life
I could only find photos of two of the four menorahs of my life. I've found, oddly, that the menorahs I've celebrated Chanukah with over the past twenty-two years have coincincided with who I was becoming. (Yes, I know. Scintillating. Please follow along.)
Menorah One, for which I don't have a photo, was provided to my first husband and me by his father -- it was his mother's menorah, a small, old, old asymmetric brass one, styled like an ancient oil lamp, with the service candle to the left and the other eight candles to the right. It was a little off-balance, but sweet and very traditional. This menorah went back to my ex-husband's family at the end of my marriage, where I'm sure it found a place of honor.
Menorah Two, I call The Struggle. This stone menorah, a sculpture commemorative of the Warsaw Ghetto, was purchased by me -- I cannot tell you why. Maybe it reminded me of my marriage. It is the most depressing piece of Chanukah equipment I have ever seen. Neither I nor the ex- wanted it at the end. I have no idea where it is currently residing.
Menorah Three was purchased right after the divorce. It's a tasteful, art-deco piece that balances gracefully on angular legs ... befitting the new me, a stylin' menorah that I was certain would fit into my avant-garde single lifestyle. *rolls eyes* I still have this menorah. It is more stylish than I am. But I have plans.
And: Menorah Four, the Tree of Life menorah. Appropriately, it is small and unassuming, and its curving branches symbolize the unexpected twists and turns of life. This menorah is wise, if not old. And I love it the best, for its humility, and its grace. Hopefully, I've earned a bit of both of those.
Our latkes won't make their appearance until later during this week of Chanukah. But please accept my warm wishes for a happy Festival of Lights as it begins tonight!