Our heritage Mar 4, 2013 17:41:04 GMT 1
Post by pjotr on Mar 4, 2013 17:41:04 GMT 1
Poland isn't unique, but it is the country that captures my imagination for various reasons related to my heritage and its culture. Therefore, I appreciate these artistic photos of Poland much more than I would appreciate photos of another country.
My feelings and opinion and connection to Poland may be close to your one. Although we are different in our Polish Diaspora being. Understanding this appreciation of images of Poland is maybe better understandable for the Polonia outside Poland then for Poles themselves who live day after day in Polish cities and towns. My range maybe is slightly different due to the presence and living of my Polish family in more countries in the region than Poland alone. Due to their heritage in the Russian and Austrian empires who occupied Poland for so long, Baltic (Lithuanian, Estonian), Ukrainian, Russian and Czech influences played a part. It is true that I felt more at home in Krakow and Warsaw then Prague and Budapest, but in the same time I felt the shared Central-European heritage in these Czech and Hungarian capitals.
We talked about the Kresy here. I would feel at home in Vilnius (Wilno), Hrodna (Grodno) and Lviv (Lwów) too, because they were Polish and have a Polish heritage and minority. I am not particulary fond of Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Belarussians, Germans and Russians, because of thew way they treated the Poles. Maybe the Poles didn't always treated the Ukrainians correctly, but I have Polish blood and not Ukrainian. As a person you have that tribal, peoples, clan and family thing. People happen to be loyal to their own ethnic, cultural, national, regional, local and often also social (class, milieu) group. That is deeply rooted in us. We remember what generations before us happened to our parents, our grandparents, great grandparents and often even great-great grandparents.
And Europe can be quite complicated in ethnical, cultural and social class sense. For instance I had a lover, a girl who was half Dutch and half German. Her German mother was the daughter of German parents who were Heimatvertriebenen (Resetled German) from former Eastern-Germany or Western-Poland. They came from the city Stettin which became Szczecin.
During discussions about that time I found out that these people, the German mother and the Dutch father of this girlfriend thought from the German perspective, while I was thinking from the Polish side. That gave some tensions from my side. These people were fine. Lost their propperty in the East-German part that became Poland, but had a good life in the North German city they stayed in Lübeck. Ofcourse it was difficult to have a clear, objective and neutral historical discussion. Everybody is subjective.
Prague is dear to me, because also the brother of my Polish dziadek studied there in the early 20th century. Budapest is special due to the connection Poznan-Budapest 1956, and the historical ties between Poland and Hungary.
Estonia is special only bacuse my grandfather (dziadek) and his father were born and raised there. If there wasn't that Polish family heritage there or connection, I would'nt feel that attracted to or connected to the Baltic states. But there are some Polish roots there (Bo has the same). The same with the American family. I am connected to them due to their Polishness. THeir mother left Poland first and after that her sister, my mother left Poland too.
We are connected to the Polish soil, Polish country, Polish culture and Polish heritage, due to the graves of our Polish ancesters, their homes in Poland (other people live there now, but once, our ancesters lived there), the stories, tales and marks they left due to their presence, work, inheritange (possession's) and people wer probably don't know, but who are far relative. (and thus with whom we share bloodlines)
What connects me most to Poland is the land, the country (territory) itself, to hear the living language (everywhere as the dominant, majority language, and not like the tiny minority, diaspora, Polonia, language, which we are used too), to see and experiance Polish culture, art and history. I love Polish museums, galleries, the old towns of Polish cities, their parks, riversides and periphery (the zone, the area's between the Polish cities, towns, villages and rural land. The space inbetween them, which shows history, the present and the future inn the same time). That quintessence is more visible in Poland, Prague or Budapest, then in Berlin, Amstrerdam or London.