Saturday, March 23, 2019


You look so small
sitting in your chair 
hunched over the dining table
slurping soup.

It's Friday night,
you should have 
been expecting us,
but clearly
you weren't.

Hi,  I say 
with false brightness.
Did you give up on us?
I lean over 
to give you a hug
then sit 
in the chair
next to you.

You mumble 
and I lean closer
to hear,
wishing I hadn't.
The story you tell
makes no sense,
at least
not to me.

We should go,
our son waits
at home,
but I 
can't leave you
at that table
So we

We sit,
drowning in silence,
watching you
slowly eat
the rest of your soup
and move on to
your salad.

When you speak
it's of movies
never made,
of people
who haven't visited,
of conversations
that haven't been 
I play along
and smile
as my heart
grows heavier.

I pick
my brain,
searching for
we can have,
things I can say
that focus on
the here and now,
things that
are true 
and real.

You follow along
then tell me
Something's happened to Dad.
Thinking I've misheard
I ask you to repeat
Your father. Something must have
happened to him.

And I don't know
what to say.
How do I look into
your uncertain eyes
and say 
Dad is dead?
It's been almost
five years,
but saying it
would make it
seem like it was
happening all over 
for you
and for me.

Dad's fine,
I say,
hoping it's true,
that in some 
other dimension
Dad is fine,
watching over us,
patiently waiting for

You look at me 
Are you sure?
I sit silently
for I am
certain of nothing 


  1. I can’t imagine how difficult this must be for you. Really tugged at my heartstrings. ��

  2. What an incredible poem! I'm crying. It is so poignant and sad. I have been through exactly this. My mother didn't even remember my father much. If i brought him up in conversation, she didn't have much recollection of him and they'd been married for 33 years before he died years ago. Your description is so vivid - hunched over the dining table, slurping soup. You''re an amazing writer. I wish you peace.

    1. Thank you. What you experienced must have been so difficult to go through.

  3. Wow. This is such an incredible and powerful piece, Amanda. I am going to be thinking about this one for a long time. You have created such a moving portrait of your mother and captured such intense emotion in a way that feels very raw and very crafted at the same time.

    1. Thank you, Elisabeth. I think "raw" is a good word for it. That is definitely how I'm feeling.


Your comments are welcomed and appreciated!