Pearl Harbor
Cecilia Capuzzi

To this day I remember my mum's letters. It all started in December 1941. Every night she sat at the big table in the kitchen and wrote to my brother Johnny, who had been drafted that summer. We had not heard from him since the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. I didn't understand why my mum kept writing Johnny when he never wrote back. "Wait and see, we'll get a letter from him one day," she claimed. I don't know if she said that to calm herself, dad or all of us down. But I do know that it helped us stick together, and one day a letter really did arrive. Johnny was alive on an island in the Pacific. I had always been amused by the fact that mum signed her letters, "Cecilia Capuzzi", and I teased her about that. "Why don't you just write 'Mum'?" I said. I hadn't been aware that she always thought of herself as Cecilia Capuzzi. Not as Mum. I began seeing her in a new light, this small delicate woman, who even in high-heeled shoes was barely one and a half meters tall. She never wore make-up or jewelry except for a wedding ring of gold. Her hair was fine, sleek and black and always put up in a knot in the neck. She wouldn't hear of getting a haircut or a perm. Her small silver-rimmed pince-nez only left her nose when she went to bed.
至今我依然記得母親的信。事情要從 1941 年 12月說起。母親每晚都坐在廚房的大飯桌旁邊,給我弟弟約翰寫信。那年夏天約翰應征入伍。自從日本襲擊珍珠港以后,他就一直杳無音信。 約翰從未回信,我不明白母親為何還要堅持寫下去。 可母親還是堅持說:” 等著瞧吧,總有一天他會給我們回信的。“ 雖然我不肯定她是否只是在安慰自己,或是父親,或者是我們幾個孩子,但我們一家人卻因此更加親密。而最終我們終于等到了約翰的回信,原來他駐扎在太平洋的一個島嶼上,安然無恙。 母親總以塞西莉婭·卡普奇署名,每每令我忍俊不禁,還要嘲笑她幾句。我問:” 為什么不直接寫母親呢?“ 以前我一直沒有留意到她把自己當成塞西莉婭·卡普奇,而不是母親。我不禁以新的眼光打量自己的母親,她是多么優雅,又是那么矮小,就算穿上高跟鞋,她的身高依然不足一米五。 母親向來素面朝天,除了手上戴的婚戒,她基本是不戴其他的首飾。她的頭發順滑烏亮,盤在頸后,她從不剪短或燙曲。只有在睡覺的時候,她才摘下那副小小的銀絲眼鏡。