for my father


Your body isn’t on this earth

like the others

I still see them, hunched over

bar stools at eleven a.m.

Your body isn’t on this earth

and I wonder where you drifted?

to an embankment

of some kind

to a bed of moss

a nest?

our rose petals we’d sent after

your ashes rotten years ago

your body isn’t on this earth

you’re more like a breath

or a petal, just above the stir


if I could talk you into

piecing back together

for an afternoon

I would touch

your face,

sober and clear,

I wouldn’t be afraid

I wouldn’t ask you why

I’d memorize your eye color

and the way your lashes swept,

I’d trace the bones we’d burned

I’d say my name for you;

I wouldn’t turn you in for all you were

I’d tell you who you were and are to me,

letting you go

and watch you scatter

softly back across the river

like a breath telling you I’ll see you again.

16 thoughts on “Scatter

  1. What a lovely talent with words you have.

    I ask my dead dad for nothing. I explain that he is responsible for,his life, him being a narcissist, he did the best he could. I guess. Does it matter now. No!!

    I relinquish judging him to not work on forgiveness, I care nothing about forgiveness. I care about my freedom and granting none of my life to,the past.

    I wake up and look at this second and beneath the surface.

    Miracles are before us But we are occupied with cognitive manipulation. What if?

    We will die the same day whether we worry ad do not ever try or live free and experience life.

    Stepping back,without the ego, this seems an easy Decision


    Your skills with prose humble me. Hahahahha


  2. I’d memorize your eye color

    and the way your lashes swept,

    I’d trace the bones we’d burned

    I’d say my name for you
    …this and the following lines are where you crushed me…just for one more moment together…very emotional piece for me…


  3. this is thick with emotions and a kind of shy love, mingled with regret.. really can feel this.. my father used to drink and i found it difficult to love him…still, i would love to be able to go back to some moments and act differently


  4. It’s really hard for me to read your site. You might look into that.. However, the poem was haunting (I cut and pasted it into an empty sheet to read). and deeply affecting. Nice the way you wove in the empathy and longing without letting go of the traits that helped define him and possibly took him away.


  5. This is a beautiful, elegant elegy. May my father find your father, and may they be friends. Thanks.


      1. Just added your website to the list of sites “worth your read” – I love your writing . Glad I found you.


      2. yes i do it’s at – come visit, but bring modest expectations 🙂


  6. Moving & beautiful poetry, Amy..This > “I’d memorize your eye color

    and the way your lashes swept,” did it for me….agree with Brian up there….so touched xo


  7. Quiet, beautiful. My father died a few years ago – and I read the words and remembered.
    Fabulous header image by the way, dahlink!



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