Unfinished 2

I told the poet,

I think

I think

of my dad more now,

of love not really disguised

but not quite recognized,

now the way broken

and the words unspoken.

Those days

trips to places,

open spaces,

drives to historical sites,

we always stopped

to eat,

no outing ever complete

without food,

and those restaurants,

the lingering traces,

scents and memories mined,

and entwined

with all the things

we never said–

too late regret

for what was,


perhaps imperfectly.

Seeking to flee

our parents

and love—

the things as children

we never see

but now–

so much of them


in me.










This goes with my Unfinished from a few days ago. Robert Okaji’s “Empty Cup,” got me started.  I realize it also fits Jilly’s Day 16 (yesterday’s) quotation for her 28 Days of Unreason, poetry inspired by Jim Harrison’s poetry.


“You can’t write the clear biography
of the aches and pains inside your skull”

~ Harrison from Skull /  Songs of Unreason




25 thoughts on “Unfinished 2

  1. This is lovely, Merril. It was me, I’m sure, and I see the same thing in my eldest, wanting to move on and away. The opposite is true of the second who refuses to let go. I wonder if she will end up seeing what I and many other grown up grown away children missed?

    • Thank you very much, Jane. I never moved far away, but when I was younger, I thought I might. And thought I’d be different from my parents. . .well, I was definitely much more hands-on as a parent. . .but then I see traits. 🙂

      • We all moved away, but then our parents and grandparents had moved away too though they did tend to gravitate back to home base as they got older. Some children don’t feel the need to break away, but others do.

  2. Poignant.

    I’ve long envied my friends’ relationship with their fathers. The good ones are easy to envy, but I envy the bad ones too, for you at least know how to think of him. I’ve had neither. While I have a few memories, snatched really — I was less than five in both — I have no real sense of who my father was. It’s an eternal void.

    • Thank you, Janet. I imagine it must be. Even though my parents divorced (twice), my father was always in my life, and I never doubted his love. And my niece was fortunate to have him as her stand-in father, as she had no father in her life.

  3. Very wistful and nostalgic, Merril. That photo of you and your dad? The design of the veil looks like Anne Boleyn’s headpiece! How cool is that!

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