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.