” I shake my memory

Maybe something in its branches

that has been asleep for years

will start up with a flutter.”

– “May 16, 1973”, WisÅ‚awa Szymborska

This blog is essentially the chronicles of a granddaughter’s quest to get to know the grandmother she never had the chance to meet.

Through the telling of this personal story I hope to also tell the greater historical and political odyssey of the Poles who were deported to Siberia during World War II. This journey of great loss, hardship, endurance and love will meander its way from a winters morning in February 1940 in the eastern borderlands of Poland, through Central Asia, the Middle East, East Africa and end in a nursing home in Leamington Spa.

Through my grandmother’s own words, family memories, oral histories and archival research I hope to piece together my grandmother’s life and in the process be introduced to Kasia and the woman she was before she was my grandmother.