Winter 2023 - My Father is a Bridge

My father was born in 1939 in Calgary, the second of two sons to Leo and Clara. He tells me his parents considered Lucien a good Canadian name because they had a friend from Russia, Alyosha, who had emigrated to Canada and taken on the name Lucien. Neither this Alyosha/Lucien nor my grandparents took into consideration that Lucien was a French name, and they were living in Alberta, thousands of miles away from Quebec and most francophone communities.

     But there was another reason my father was named Lucien, a reason I didn’t completely understand until a few years ago. My father was also named for his father’s sister, Lucy …


Leanne Lieberman is the author of several young adult books, including Gravity, Lauren Yanofsky Hates the Holocaust, and The Most Dangerous Thing. Her latest book is Cleaning Up (Groundwood Books, 2023). She has also published fiction and essays in the New Quarterly, Grain, Descant, and other Canadian journals. She lives in Kingston, Ontario.

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