“My Father’s Wife and My Daughter’s Emu” by Nina Dabek— Moments in Life

Dabek, Nina “My Father’s Wife and My Daughter’s Emu”, Atmosphere Press, 2021.

Moments in Life

Amos Lassen

Nina Dabek brings us a collection of funny and sad stories in “My Father’s Wife and My Daughter’s Emu”.We read of moments in the life of one worried, loving woman that remind us that ordinary life is never ordinary, and is also more dangerous than we might think. Yet, with the right partner-a woman as loving as she is, happiness may be saved.

Dabek shares domestic life frankly and with humor. Nostalgia, grief, gratitude, devotion are all here. This is a  portrait of a woman’s passage from the delusions of childhood to the revelations and burdens of adulthood.

Naomi is the middle of three sister who grows up in late 20th century New York. Just as Naomi comes into her own, history frames the narrative of her life.

She lives in the Bronx with her two sisters and her parents and grapples with the complexity of her relationships, her family’s mysteries, and the world around her. She experiences the challenges and pleasures of lesbian motherhood, while at the same time dealing with her father’s past and present and her complicated love for him. We are with her from childhood to motherhood as she deals with and makes sense of the world.