Breaking News of Dead Fathers


Breaking news of dead fathers

came by overheard gossip
came by telephone
came by quivering-jawed policemen who needed comforted by the bereaved
came by a mothers voice beckoning her child to long-distance grief
came by the news of another dead pop star
came by a quiet word in a dream

came like now finally arriving
came like a shaky fourth leg on an old wooden table
came like an icy wind slicing through a downpour
came like a meaningless sentence
came like a thief with a removal van
came like a plague for a houseguest

came nothing like the imagining
came with its bags packed

it will be here for a while

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3 thoughts on “Breaking News of Dead Fathers

  1. I’ve been trying to steady myself for this one knowing there is no way and no reason to…”came nothing like the imagining”. Soon enough…”it will be here for awhile” Thanks for this….
    In reading this beautiful poem Brian, I feel I’m doing okay.

    • In the natural order if things, an examination the parents should want us to take, rather than its corollary “Breaking News of Dead Children”. The exam everybody fails.
      My own father passed 26 years ago, a heart attack in the local newsagent. Resuscitated by a local policeman. And then died again. The young policeman came to our house to break the news and was so distraught by it all we had to comfort him.
      Comfort, come fortified.

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