Dear father,
who is in heaven
if heaven is as hallowed
as they say.
I miss you and remiss you
every day,
meaning that
I miss you again
and again
but still spend
as if time were money,
a currency that could be
accumulated, counterfeit,
newly engraved;
ever asking you,
who knew better,
to help me stop. 


A sort of poem for Grapeling’s prompt on With Real Toads to “get listed.”  In this prompt, Grapeling asks us to use homonym-type words or words that have different meanings.  I hate to direct interpretations of a poem but I’m including the word father as one of these,  as I feel like the poem is directed more to my personal father than a grander one, but not sure that meaning comes across.  The above photo is not really synced to the poem, but was taken recently at my house in upstate New York.  This is a second story room, ice on the windows–you can see a speck of tree at the top. 



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18 Comments on “Remittal”

  1. brian miller Says:

    ah, perhaps he will help us stop spending ourselves…
    at least frivolously….

  2. Plum Says:

    I really like the last four lines. And I knew where you were going with this before you explained it in the second half of the poem. I mentally inserted a hyphen immediately when I read the line, “I miss you and re-miss you.” Losing parents is one of the most ongoing pains one can ever know. It’s a pain, I think, that must increase in intensity as time goes on. I don’t imagine one can heal from such a loss, but only force herself to go on. What other choice is there?

  3. Helen Says:

    Love this! Father / your father either way it works.

  4. that first line instantly made me wonder.. “if heaven is as hallowed as they say” are such powerful words.
    There is a touch of insight in your verse which lies in the shadow of a silent prayer.

  5. Kerry O'Connor Says:

    This does read like a private prayer or conversation with one who has passed away – but the very universal nature of such thought and intention makes this poem ever-relevant to adult children who have lost a parent.

  6. hedgewitch Says:

    A great simplicity to this k, which helps add to the mystery of where our love, time and even money go which we spend so constantly–and yes, the sense of loss and of the missing, remissing and remitting, comes through most beautifully I think.

  7. The shortness of this poem make it all the stronger. Who will ever tell which paths that loss will leas us?

  8. M Says:

    k, the little clues you leave (Dear, rather than Our, father, and the 3rd line) paint the personal while allowing the celestial (as it were). the close is so intimate, and true. glad that added your voice ~

  9. Brendan Says:

    I read the poem as the prayer like the ice on that window — so close but infinitely far — asking for a father’s blessing to stop missing a father so, because such grief is too extravagant. Yes.

  10. Gillena Cox Says:

    nice one K, luv your start up line, we have all been there, the questioning, the equating “if” then …

    much love…

  11. claudia Says:

    but still spend
    as if time were money… that part stuck out for me… think there’s a good way of spending ourselves – of giving ourselves away… and what should we safe us for – the best things in life multiply when shared

  12. MD, thanks for visiting me! I wanted to try the Get Listed prompt but was nowhere near ready. This is wonderful. The “still spending myself,” that is great writing. The “miss and remiss” concept nailed with your usual cleverness and stealth. Congrats! Amy

  13. father with a lower case (I got it wasn’t God) – and the sentiment and plea are very moving.

  14. It did come across. The fact that your poem was directed at a more personal father. Lovely rhythm. It actually reads like a hymn, although that might have to do more with my way of reading poetry. Thanks.

    Greetings from London.

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