20 December 2023

a place that I can't get to

In a room, all I feel
is the cold that you left.
Through the air, all I see
is your face full of blame.
What's left to see?
What's there to see?
...A place that I can't get to.

Red House Painters, "Song for a Blue Guitar"

Who am I but
an impermanent object
into something
I don't recognize,
dreaming of a place that
I can't get to,
where every grain of an idea,
every morsel of
a tedious ritual
seems like a waste of time
because you aren't there?

12 December 2023


with the same voice,
you would coo at small animals
and comfort your adult children.

with the same eyes,
though colorblind,
you would sort laundry
and choose school outfits.

with the same hands,
you would tidy Grandma's grass and trees
and bury beloved pets
when they passed from this realm into the next,

leaving their vessels behind
for you to carefully grieve,

for you to lay their empty limbs down and rest
as comfortably as possible.

with my soul, with my heart,
I hope you can know
I am so thankful.

rest, dad.

04 December 2023

The true quiet

For Dad

How fortunate to have each day
with you, beyond the artificial quiet
of this room, full of gentle beeps
and yellow lights, shining gems
of unknown information.
How fortunate to have each day
of choices for you, gifted hands taking
wires and tubes and delicate machines
blessing you with comfort.
But how selfishly, forcefully I have behaved,
taking the hands of father time into my own--
Why now, and why him? I ask.
The helper, the seeker
who couldn't help himself,
still seeking purpose for himself,
still needing to love himself--

I know there are no answers.
With the time that is left, I am here,
we are here, anticipating
the true quiet, and loving you--
how fortunate.