Moving down the page
At an acceptable change of pace,
We were so kind of in love,
Though I seem to have misplaced her face.
But I’m sure she was brunette
And possessive of wit and lust,
But like most of my choices
It all kinda went for spit and bust.
So here I write Saharan poetry—
Dry and empty as this Austin life.
Hoping better for the kid unit;
Truth oft separates like a steak fat knife.
No, no deep answers here:
Just marooned on the less traveled.
Awaiting that unadorned underbox
Overlaid in Southern granite that’s neatly marbled.
He put the car in drive,
Out the driveway towards Albert Lane,
It would be a new 12 days to pass
Before seeing his daughter again.
He left the window open a crack;
Perhaps she’d forget something and would call?
No, he didn’t like dropping her at Fablehaven;
No, not really, not actually much at all.
His role snap-changed to just an aging man
When moments before he was in a family.
So what if it was only a family in two—
It was all he had here so far west of St. Tammany.
The tears dried absent just as expected,
With old long practice at things not being as one wanted.
Some would exalt giddy at this free, single life,
But he didn’t think that this kind of alone was all that vaunted.
Turning back to home on Glencrest Drive
As another Sunday evening purpled into dark,
He allowed a thought that it was perhaps okay—
And put the car in park.
We conquered mighty castles
Together, in blanquette or in the sand
Flew great heights on swings
Soared up Austin hills hand-in-hand
We shared in many battles:
Mastery in the great tragedy of Trigonometry,
Consumed Texas History and First Violin,
And developed a healthy skepticism of Allah and Deuteronomy
Some wars were personal:
The treachery of childhood friends;
While learning great truths—
That the means don’t always justify some ends
But today my princess walks ahead
Out of my guidance and out of my reach
No more to cavort on trampoline
Or harry stubborn castles on a beach
Her fresh adventure awaits—
Arm-in arm with her new young prince,
A meeting of Love and Good Sense;
She hasn’t been my princess since
But our regard hasn’t been stronger
Even if she is my princess no longer
Papa come play;
Papa put down your cares today.
Are you really so sad as that?
Did all those days leave you cold and flat?
Papa, tell me no more of that war;
Papa, yes, there are better things in store.
Try not to leave me with your weeping back;
Yes, I see you cry, I see the tears’ crisscross track.
Papa, were they all your friends?
Papa, not all met very bad ends;
Some of you did at last come home—
Some happy, though others are still lost, and roam…
Papa come play;
Papa, look what I drew for you today:
With crayon, a horsie of orange and blue.
O Papa, Mommy and I really love you.
Little Isabelle cradled in her tired Papa’s lap, and one good arm;
Papa pushed out a smile: Father and daughter were now safe and warm.
For Our Veterans: thank you isn’t nearly enough! Bless You!