note: entire contents copyright 1998 by Larry Stark
Deborah Lubar gives people two very different women in "A Story's A Story" --- one dead, one dying. Her Rose Solomon freely admits she died in 1992 but was asked to return to tell some stories about the Hassidic mystic called The Baal Shem Tov. But though Lubar tells these magical stories of a spiritual leader who lived in the Carpathians in the early 1700's, she is much more interested in the plain-faced, twisted-legged Polish emmigrant who heard these stories from her parents and always demanded "But, Papa, is it true?" After intermission she returns as Luigina, an Italian emmigrant who met that same Rose on the boat to America, and whose life was touched and transformed by her friendship. The radiant humanity of these two created characters prove that although "A Story's A Story" some stories are more important than truth.
Rose sits. Luigina, who has absented from her dying body for a breath of fresh air in trhe back yard, is more peripatetic. But both rove through their pasts, illuminating the significant people and events that changed their lives. The Old Country experience, the American immigrant experience, and the inner realization that everyday life can become miraculous --- these are the the elements in what turns out to be two interconnected lives.
The humanity and the miraculous burst through this story, perfectly illustrating the fact that "mere" stories ain't as mere as everyone supposes.