Friday, August 17, 2007

For my father in 2006

At two o’clock today he declared
“Well, it’s time to go.”
Where?” I asked
Where?” my blind and deaf mother asked.
“Home.”
”But you are home.” we said.
“You’ve been living here eight years,” I said.
“since you were eighty-four.”

My father, now unsteady on your feet,
you don’t remember your location, your wallet, your keys,
but you do remember
when I ran out in front of
oncoming traffic one day,
after kindergarten.
You were on the other side of the street.
You said it was because I was
already nearsighted
and no one knew it yet.
I recall
it was because
I didn’t notice the oncoming traffic –
All I saw was you,
YOU, I saw clearly,
and still do,
standing on the other side of the street,
waiting for me.

2 comments:

Veritas said...

Sister Anne, May I first say I am truly sorry you have lost your father. The poem is simply lovely and I'm sure it will mean even more to you now, though I'm sure you're glad it was written while he was alive. Patrick Kavanagh wrote a short poem after the death of his father, remarking how every old man he met on the road reminded him of his. This very thing happened me yesterday - I saw a man who at a distance was my father's double, and I felt a little stabbing in my heart. But I like to think he is with the angels and the saints now and praying for us all...maybe they'll meet up?
Please continue to post your poems. I really like them, God bless, Ann

lactose intolerant lisa said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. This poem is lovely and transcendent. The feeling of deep connection it invokes is very emotional to me. Thank you for sharing this.