Sevenau Line: Sideways and Down

Sevenau brothers w/dad Lou Sevenau standing: Bob and Mike seated: Lou and Steve

Sevenau brothers w/dad Lou Sevenau
standing: Bob and Mike
seated: Lou and Steve

With more than their share of scandal and drama, the Sevenau line was definitely not boring to research or write about. There are not many with this name, and within the last month with the passing of brothers Steve and Mike Sevenau, sadly became two less. The verse is about Lou Sevenau (their father), his siblings, and the family line before them.

Sideways and Down

Threw my hat in the ring for the Sevenau tree
There were only four kids—how hard could it be?
But no one had told me they’d all married twice
And some of them wedded a good more than thrice.

The name made it easy, uncommon at that,
Easy to trace and track down for a chat.
But questions abounded and confusion did reign
Three steps back I would take—then two I would gain.

There were flocks of offspring with wives one thru four
A few changed their names, some fled by back door.
Gene, Jeanne, and Eugene, those called the same—
Names Louis and Ernie gave a break in the game.

Third-gen San Franciscans of that they can boast
And from the beginning the toddy they’d toast.
You’d think they were Irish the way they behaved
Their French and Italian blood ended up shaved.

Few could stay married and their own way they went
Starting with Alice and Edmond Clement
The parents re-mated and added more moppets
Twas confusing to figure their mommas and papas.

Where’d this kid come from? Who is their father?
Call up the cousins and hope not to bother.
So many kids by so many wives
Was hard to keep straight their lineage and lives.

The stories I heard clearly splashed across genes
Poured through them all from adults down to teens.
Hard to stay married, hard to stand strong
When whiskey and gin croon the main song.

These customs passed down from Edna to kids,
Some lost their way, ending up on the skids.
Lou played the cop to the right of the law
The others broke rules and ended up raw.

Some did not speak, clearly culled from the line
Protecting their hearts in their rum, pills, and wine.
But what they delivered were kids by the dozens
Creating a web of most interesting cousins.

What they in common, some kids of these blokes?
A want to reach out and connect with kinfolks.
“We want to belong, we want to be in!
Might as well mix with our own kith and kin.”

Perhaps our own children can turn this around,
This cycle of ire, something else to be found.
Offer them wisdom and trust they may see
The grace in one’s family and love of this tree.

Catherine (Clemens) Sevenau, Keeper of the Lines, May 2009

Steve Sevenau memorial
Mike Sevenau memorial

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  1. Catherine you write the way the rest of just wish we could. I always appreciate the combination of honesty and humor. Dang you are good!

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