I tell them,
I am not writing about the men
you see unless it’s
my
dead dad

and
my
dead brother.

abandonment?
who me?
wearing my father’s knit
NY Giants cap and
bereaving, stripped,
replaying the final moment:
hand held, eye contact,
the knowing I had and decision
to forgo a flowery speech.
elision.
the last thing my father and I ever
said to each other was
I love you


before I left,
palms on the linoleum,
sobs held,
bargaining,
one more Christmas.

it’s brevity a poet seeks.

  1. (love)

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