Dedicated to John in ‘7, but applies to Patrick now as well. Today would have been John’s 108th birthday.

Fathers whisper 
With the breeze
In long encouraging phrases
To offset
Somber reminders
Each bitter milestone brings

Dads encourage children,
With each questioning gaze
Reflected in our mirrors,
To thrive
Despite their fatherly absence

Parents speak
From beyond our world
With loving words of comfort
As if they were still here

And when sadness wells up
As it must do
On each new anniversary
Of some dramatic moment
Our fathers
Wipe away the tears
With our own trembling fingers
Tell us it's okay
In our own quivering voices
Help us to heal
From within our own hearts
Touch us, support us, encourage us
Through every action
We learned from their caring souls

We cry in longing
For them
Whom we have lost

But then the sun bursts forth
And they remind us
Through golden rays
That they're at peace
And ask us to be the same

They help us to remember
The many happy moments
That defined
Our never-ending childhoods
Until at last we smile again
And laugh in recollection of the good times

And in our renewal of life's affirmations
We make them happy
Our renewed vitality
By the education they gave us
And the many special memories
They taught us to enjoy

Copyright © 2007 John P M Dillon