Posts Tagged ‘father’

My Father’s Ghost

Posted: January 24, 2012 in My Poetry
Tags: , , , , , , ,

I dreamed I saw your ghost last night.
You seemed to have lost your head.

I followed your gaunt shuffle,
waiting for a sign;
some reason you’d come back

but you wandered, headless,
down the hallway
turned a corner and were gone.

You’d gone into your office,
so I went there too.

You weren’t there, just
your books, the newest published
a month after your death.

So many things you cared about
with passionate intensity.

The publisher asked
what we wanted done with the royalties.

Of course, they’ll fund your scholarship for
botany students with promise:
your namesake and your baby.
Plants were your only true love.

I guess you’ll live on
in leaves of various kinds.

Leafing through the pages, now
I feel your quiet presence.

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My sister says she misses you.
I wish I could agree.

I don’t miss you.
I hardly knew you –
at least any “you” I liked or respected.

To me, you were The Bogeyman;
origin of my self-loathing.
I’m relieved that you are gone,
happy that you’re dead.

Not because
I hate you, though, and
I thank God for that.

All those nights, alone with you –
You could have been my victim too,
a bitter role-reversal.
But I made a different choice.

I rubbed your back, held your hand,
changed your bedding, clothes and diapers.
I loved you when you were helpless,
because you couldn’t love me when I was.

When you died,
I was happy that you’d escaped the pain,
free from that worn-out body.

I too, was freed:
released from a lifetime
of hate and fear;
your whipping post, no longer.

We went our separate ways,
finally at peace.
Who could ask for more?

Then why do I feel so envious
that my sister had something to miss?

Between a breath and

the one that never follows,

you slip away;

crippled body left behind

like leaves dropped after a storm.

Forgotten, unnecessary –

marking the end of a season.

The monitor
picks up
my father’s breathing,
the occasional moan, a cough,
some swearing.

Dying is not easy.
It’s hard on him.
It’s hard on us.

Watch him wither
like a flower, cut;

first drooping,
now drying out –
becoming something else.

He wavers
in and out
of focus
like a star
too dim to clearly see.

Muttered halves
of conversations
held with people
invisible to me.

I wonder what he sees
when his eyes
turn blank
to this world.

He comes back,
eventually.
Asks for a cola,
maybe ice cream.

The simple pleasures
of childhood.

Then he turns,
curls back to that place
of lucid dreaming.
Eyes open,
but unfocused.

Like a brittle husk,
he’s mummifying
while I watch,
helpless
to stop the process.

I wouldn’t if I could.
He wants what he sees
when his eyes dim
to this world.

It must be something
good.

The color
of grape Kool-Aid;
purple with swirling blue.

Umbilical cord tight
around his neck,
he strangled
with every contraction.

Heart rate dropped
so perilously low,
a pediatrician was called
to be on hand…
Just-In-Case.

Pushing then swoosh
there he was,
my blue baby.

They removed
the cord from his neck,
and handed him to his father.
I stroked his face;
the same color as my nail polish.

Suction of fluid from lungs
then oxygen followed
until he grew pinker,
more human.
Still, a bloody little thing
always held by someone else.

I felt no sense of attachment.
Just crushing weight of responsibility;
knowing he was mine
completely,
at for least 18 years.

I didn’t want to get too close,
terrified by my year-old nephew’s
repeated clinical deaths.
I spent the night awake,
trying to devise ways
to make a break for it –
despite the pain.

Morning came
I was still there,
unable to figure out
how to flee into the darkness;
leave him to his father,
my mother…anyone
but me.

Then,
around the corner;
a clear acrylic bin.
I looked in –
my fatal error.
I never looked back again.

He was mine.
My child.
The one I’d waited for.
I loved his little turtle face,
strange mewling sounds,
his smell.

Through the years,
there were problems.
Bad lungs kept me afraid
that I’d lose
the only thing that mattered.

A sweet child,
beautiful, charming.
He always had that gift.

Then pre-teen,
cocky, sullen
but sometimes mine
again, at night.
I would read to him
or sing
and he would forget
that he was not a mama’s boy;
nestle into the crook of my arm.

Teenage years
spent learning how
to kill with his bare hands:
martial arts
obsessed.

Now he’s an adult.
I look back
on years
that went too fast.

All the changes
all the chances
I had to make a difference.
I messed up
most of them.

He has no need,
now, for a mother.
He wants me far away.
He’s just a cold stranger
but I love him, anyway.

If you were to ask me
what he wanted
where he lived,
or how he felt,
I could give you general answers,
gleaned from other sources.

My own son
is as alien to me
as any stranger on the street.

Looking at his baby books,
I pause at this page,
and that. Remember favorite pastimes.
They’re all past time, now.

All I have is memory
of the son I brought to earth.
Cherished as well as I was able
then let go, at his request.

People say
he loves me.
But I know it isn’t true.
He wants me to disappear
as much as I want to.

Embarrassed
by me; my scars,
my insanity;
by that fact that I exist

I am embarrassed too,
for loving him as much as I do
when I’m simply a source
of shame for him,
my former Little Boy Blue.

25 years ago,
my sister gave birth
through her skin;
her 3rd cesarean.

I captured the moment
with a failed flash;
emerging head illuminated
by surgical lights
otherworldly glow –
The door to Heaven,
briefly opened.

I held him first, cradled
his small, still bloody body
mere seconds before
reluctantly releasing him
to his father.

We walked to the nursery
together while they sutured
the gaping wound
through which he arrived.

Last year, I repeated the act of
returning him to his Father.

More painful this time,
because I know
he won’t be coming back.

I am practicing heartache,
learning to let go gracefully,
without tears or whimpers.

Each time I let go,
I am learning the way
to loosen my grip on what
was never really mine.

To say,
not goodbye,
but later.

The things I have
I hold closer.
They too
will leave me someday.

I am learning
how to hold on.

I am learning
how to let go.

4-1-11

***Caution to viewers. This video can be triggering/upsetting. It contains images that can be disturbing. Be safe.***
This is to provide information about this very misunderstood disorder that affects aproximately 1% of the world’s population.
The disorder is very real. As someone diagnosed with it, I know for a fact that it is.
(for those who are going to ask which song this is… it’s “About her” From the Kill Bill soundtrack)
Video & caution by MaxP0wer25 on youtube
Song Scarlet by Brooke Fraser, video by Bcciliz
video by castorgirl
Directed by Trevor Sands, posted on youtube by InsideShort
This is part 1 of 8 of a series called MPD / DID – Trauma based Mind Control – it’s well worth the time it takes to watch, if you want to understand DID.

In the white bellow
I see him
wrapped tight around our son,
swaying to the dance
of dark raindrops.
Lightning gouges;
ice-pick sharp
and night
sucks into the wound.

After spilling gutters clear
and beaten trees drop leaves
he climbs in beside me, his cold
bristles against my legs;
the baby, a warm comma between us.
The only wind now
is the sound of our breathing
and I sink, like a stone, into sleep.

O’ My Father

Posted: April 3, 2010 in My Poetry
Tags: , , , , , , ,

O’ Father of the Blackened Eye,
I worship you with spit.
Creator of all that is ugly,
in Thine image I am made.

And Thy name is Pain
and Anger and Sorrow:
You are legion in your names.

I hate the very word of you
with your black and blue message
of love.

Manifestation of evil.
You are a god in your own right.
King of the castle,
Lord of the roost,
and Destroyer of my soul.

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