Friday, 6 September 2013

The Farthest Journey (for Dad )

It is in the sound of the apparatus - like gods,
they surround him, stare into the heart of him
and murmur a decision about him -  that I feel
my disconnect from the prospect of his death.

Every labored breath he takes, I promise 
another act performed as penance, as payment; 
a stalling of The Ferry’s price. My thoughts, 
a cat o' nine tails, I flay my future with.

On his finger resides a clip. He dangles on a line,
or is dangled; a slim chance that he may yet return
to my shore and cease his ramblings about a past 
before I was born and smile again at me, his last boy.

I have not the words of farewell, sacred or profane; I
cannot remember when he last held me, or the feel of his lips,
only his chin, rough as sandpaper, and his watery eyes
that smiled at me whenever I found my way home.

I have wandered far and thought I had left him behind
but now I stand at his hospital bed and realize
he is to take the farthest journey as I stand there
and try to remember every shattered aspect of us.

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