The drawer rolls in, his body cased
in the final …….. of impotence –
the final ………. of betrayal by the God
he hoped would save him. The door
swings shut + seals him in, not even
allowed to rot into the air, as if
to close him on himself in death
as in life. The concrete crypt holds
him in, as if he would try to escape.
I wait, on th flowered green, for him
to break the stone + call my name.
+ out on the impatient lawn
I hear my father’s song.
“You know, I wanted to do something once, too.”
It begins in the key of C, then slips
into A minor like a Kris Kristoffersen
paean to the smallest neglect,
the penitent whining in the gutter
wailing the injustice – Saul
was killing Christians + he was saved!
Al I did, was get a little lost
in my family, a sense of duty
so sensitive to others’ pain
I forgot my own. It all
comes back to me, now that I’ve no strength
left to fight, like dogs turned loose
on the bleeding lamb.
… And here I sing my father’s song.
Jimmie Rodgers creaking out his
brakeman / hard-luck poppa / always
waiting for a train but singing
blues, then waiting out a …….. (hefty)
whistle (no TB there!) that
……… (echoes?) in the wilderness alone
against the birds at home in rain-soaked
trees. It’s here, in the rain-soaked breeze,
I mourn my father’s song.
The Jessie Dixon Singers swell
into Simon’s chorus too late.
“I will lay me down …” too late.
Too late, “I will ease your mind …”
The minor soars within my chest
+ I can’t breathe. And here
I cry my father’s song.
The “church, decayed + dim” rolls out
its feeble tolls, in Red Foley’s song,
to death inscrutable: I weep
the “interest on the loan” – he was
only lent; now he’ll steal away
(the song dips, mourning nonetheless,
into A minor) … home.
Home is where he’ll be all right + love
us all finally, as he wished he could
if only we hadn’t been in the way.
If only he could’ve done that “something”
that he’d hung himself on the cross for.
I’m sorry, Mom, but home is where
I’ll never sing my father’s song.