The last time I saw my father

The last time I saw my father

He was so serene, I marveled how the undertaker
had gotten him
exactly right; his face back to a dignity it had always had
in illness, and also not;
his features so sweetly defined, not blurred
as they could be
by pain or anxiety—

He had never been fearful (not for himself), but he had worried deeply
about those he loved—why were they so determined
to take chances?
Or, much more insistently:
what would happen to her (my mother) when
he was gone?

But the last time I saw him, his face
no longer fretted—I had seen it before they fixed him too
and I know—
I know—
he no longer worried, and it wasn’t because
of any lessening of love,—

So that when I weep now,
it is for myself only, not for his loss of life,
but for my loss
of him—

I do not worry about what
has happened to him, where
he has gone—
With both hands, with his own face,
he gave me some measure of freedom
from that— 

There is simply a kind of love you cannot bear
not to have any more,
even when
you still have it. 

****************************

Draftish poem for Father’s Day. Have a good one!

ps – as always, all right to text and image reserved.

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One Comment on “The last time I saw my father”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    Beautiful—thank you!


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