Hour #4: Letter to my father

#4:  Letter to my father


Dear Dad

You would not like it here

The world is so far removed from what you remember

That you’d be sad, your head dropped down like I had seen it

Once or twice when you thought I didn’t notice.

I saw it when you talked about my sister, a realization of loss

When you saw a harder side of her, a betrayal of your “sweet Sisi”;

I know you blamed yourself, even though you cast the cause elsewhere

But I heard it in the tone of your voice, equal parts disbelief and resignation,

And saw it in the angle of your back as you sat on one of those high stools

In her house that we both hated,

Your head retracting between your shoulders

Into a flat stillness.


I don’t know what you’d think about our country right now

Having failed at everything we set out to protect.

You’d be mad as hell I think

Like when you were in the hospital

Three months in and out of the ICU before you died

Attached like Frankenstein before he was unleashed

And you smiled at me when I came in your room

Holding up the tube for your colostomy bag,

That you decided to yank out

Full of defiance and fight.


I wish you were here, Dad

So we could talk every day

And you’d let me go on and on about whatever was on my mind

Mom tries but I can hear her weariness through the phone

But she lovingly puts up with me, because she knows what I know,

That you and I are the same.

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