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My father's head lies on the wood,

almost mouthing a loving word,

his breath misting the empty glass:

his gnarled finger points to trace

a smiley face, a skinny boy

with spiky hair and moonlit eyes,

skipping above the snowy clouds.

He wraps this boy in laughter song,

clothing a dream with summer days.

Edited by badger11
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"Almost mouthing a loving word ... " -- a bittersweet moment in a poem that's replete with distinctly Badger content all of it delightfully framed in flawless iambic tetrameter. A pleasure to read. Happy holidays, Badge!

 

Tony

Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

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Happy holiday to you my friend :wine2:

 

You realise I'll have to revise - a compulsive need in me - that 'flawless' accident! lol

 

badge

Edited by badger11
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Hi Badger, You are very very good. This piece is really well written. As the daughter of an alcoholic, the first few lines made me queezy inside. My Dad is long passed but forgiveness is a funny thing, I dealt with it long long ago, then I read your lines and those horrible feelings of love, hate and fear all surface. I am afraid your poem knew the buttons to push. Now that is good writing.

 

~~Tink

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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Poignant write which I enjoyed reading several times over. The slant rhymes are skilful and allow the poem to flow smoothly without being intrusive. Benjamin

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At first, I thought the image presented a dead man inside the coffin. Sometimes my English gets in the way :-)

 

But then I repainted the picture of a man with an empty glass. I tried to call up associations with an empty glass and a man lying down with his kid. That was puzzling for me for a while. Then, I read Tink's comment. I recalled one time when I was a kid and my drunk uncle holding his glass filled with beer with one hand while his other hand and arm were on my shoulder talking to me so close I can smell the beer from his breath.

 

The internal rhyme was cleverly built in making it an enjoyable read.

"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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As always many thanks for your encouragement Tink. I found the honesty of your response moving and feel for you in experiencing such a challenge.

 

take care

 

badge

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Thank you for your most interesting response JJ on how your reading of the poem evolved from the speculative to the personal. The experience with your uncle was vivid.

 

many thanks

 

badge

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Hi badge,

 

A reminiscence shot through with another reminiscence is how I read this well-crafted poem. The father sharing a moment of his own boyhood :

 

his gnarled finger points to trace

a smiley face, a skinny boy

with spikey hair and moon lit eyes,

skipping above the snowy clouds.

.

 

 

The recall is tinged in the narrator's mind with all the poignancy of a dream boyhood that neverwas:

 

He wraps this boy in laughter song,

clothing a dream with summer days

 

In some ways the father's memory and his own ambivalent relations with his son are perhaps rooted in his own lost boyhood and dream:

 

 

My father's head lies on the wood,

almost mouthing a loving word,

his breath misting the empty glass:

 

Very often I go off the track but always enjoy your poem.

 

Thank you.

goldenlangur

 

 

Even a single enemy is too many and a thousand friends too few - Bhutanese saying.

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Happy holiday to you my friend :wine2:

 

You realise I'll have to revise - a compulsive need in me - that 'flawless' accident! lol

 

badge

I knew I shouldn't have said anything! :)) I see you've revised L4. Next time I won't say anything! I'll just let it ride ;) ...

 

Tony :D

Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

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Not at all gl. It is not explicit in the poem, but legacy was very much in my mind when writing this.

 

As always many thanks for your sensitivity and care in reading.

 

badge

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, Badge. I've read this poem more than once, and what came to mind is a lonely old man who is choking in melancholy, sadness, memory, and maybe in regret also. But there is something that confuses me, and that is the son who is presented as a narrator... Well I'll think about it a little more.

 

Anyway, this is an amazing poem and very well crafted. I enjoyed it a lot.

 

Alekasndra.

The poet is a liar who always speaks the truth - Jean Cocteau

History of Macedonia

 

 

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