Sunday Morning

He bought a fresh loaf
The baker swathed it in a square of paper
pinched at the corners
good to carry under the arm
In the street he smiled
from the depths of his seventy-four years
and praised the arrival of spring.
            A new note, this,
            since a stroke of mortality
            (is it already?)
            four years ago
            he has touched gingerly
            the world he feared to leave
 
But Sunday hope was there in his eyes
like two cherries out of three
for the jackpot
Emotions out
like products of the soil
delivered through his soul
to the bosom of your own heart
 
            He would come, soon,
            to hear us play
as soon as the days were a little longer,
his bones sucking up the damp at evening
Now he lived so near the cemetery
            good he could stand in the sun
            and let his skull grin through
 
Now: suddenly,Wednesday
            snap your fingers
            whole days are gone
when you can remember three score and ten
as a flicker of bird flight among the live oaks
back to boyhood when forever
still included you
 
            Suddenly: it's Wednesday
And he has walked into our past
            halted in the midst
            of a hope or regret.

Deià, April 1984

I Would Not Like to Grow Old without Knowing My Children

Here’s a two page letter from 17 February 1979 that Patrick sent to Gretchen, myself, and another sister, in which he describes the work that he and Stephanie have been putting into their house, and the music, and the writing. He also adds observations about each of us and how he longs for us to visit.

The letter concludes with a powerful final paragraph, including Continue reading “I Would Not Like to Grow Old without Knowing My Children”