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Nov 2015
fourth of nine
I was nineteen years young
when he asked me to stay
he went “back home” and got a young wife
knew he would pass before her
asked me again when I was twenty three
crediting my older brothers
as having lives of their own
I guess he thought I wasn’t entitled
to mine

at first resentful
feeling trapped unfairly
especially since I was never a favored child
but ended up not minding obligation’s onus
appreciating her more in her elderly fragility
realizing a caretaker’s privilege
even underneath the family’s
unappreciative eyes

when he had his “fatal” heart attack
I’m glad I was there
to administer CPR
but I carry the question always
did I really help him?
or did I prolong his suffering
for two and a half months?

after awakening
from semi comatose’s state
his memory was in and out
some were upset
by his lack of recognition
but he never forgot me
and in that I take solace

he reiterated his wish
on his deathbed
like an anointing
its oil poured upon my forehead
and radiating inside me
he thought I was good enough
and equal to the task

I’ll never forget his final words
a barely audible muttered plea
that I figured out later
he raised his eyebrows and nodded
with a seemingly joyful expression
as if we had an agreement
he closed his eyes
and went to sleep
© 11/25/15
Written by
Del Maximo
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