A Memory of My Father
Each time I hear thunder rumbling in the distance,
he is there reading me Rip van Winkle.
Pictures form in my head of giants
bowling high up in the sky.
And Rip, waking up old, after sleeping
for ages, unrecognizable to his family.
Each time lightning flashes,
I am back in my bedroom--
Windows wide open for the cool breeze;
white-curtain ghosts pressing in close.
And then he appears;
first shuffling through the house,
then into my room, closing all the windows,
one by one, fearless against the building storm.
And when he does this I call out
through the black and the white,
the sudden rush of rain,
Dad, is that you? And he would answer, Yes.
My father came from his restless sleep to mine.
He came again last night and the night before;
shutting all the windows, then going out the door.
(published in The Painted Door Opened, copyright 2014, Carolyn Dahl and Carolyn Florek, Cardinal Press)