The Final Question He Asked Me (An Answer in Verse)

Dad, I have something to tell you, says the boy
Quiet as a mouse, sitting on the couch, waiting,
The room, finally still enough for him to be heard
His heart, finally hard enough for him to open.

I watch as Mom delivers your shake, you try, but
Cannot swallow, you smile, though its corners dip
A little bit too soon. Your nightingale measures O 2,
Listens to your heart, and reviews the day’s events.

The gentle man from Brazil bathes you as gently
As I imagine you bathed me, if I could remember.
I see in your eyes the flickering flame of fight
And know I must hold your hand one more time.

The grip, still strong like your hug, provides a final
Lesson: while we can still breathe, we must live,
And now I shall be as subtle as Bly or Aesop:
To live, to truly live, we must do one thing: Love.

Over the next weeks, I am going to take trips back in time on my blog Pointed Home and discover the most viewed posts by month and share them here at the Go Dog Go Cafe. This poem was first posted in February of 2017, the first month I began sharing my poetry in earnest on-line; it was written for my Dad and read at his funeral in Portsmouth, RI a year earlier. Visit my table at — Stephen

7 thoughts on “The Final Question He Asked Me (An Answer in Verse)

  1. thank you for sharing the start of your writing journey, a sad introduction, but one that is part of the foundation of why you write. I cannot revisit my dad’s last moments because I never knew them. The emptiness of not having that closure and some others leaves a hollowness forever. Reading that you were there with your dad is reading of a very special bond.

    Liked by 2 people

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