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Nat Lipstadt Jun 2014
the irises have passed,
their existence, entirety,
a three week, 21 day, gun salute,
to which I was witness to but four

the Kabbalist among us says Kaddish,
and a-Buddhist so-be-it,
celebrating the brevity cycle
of natural things,
and that death makes room for more

**** yelloe'd and black now,
these irises are now
misfits on a breezy, dancing summer lawn

today, shriveled and misshapen,
they compare and contrast
on a normative, glorious,
June Sunday that
picturesque presents
the living and the deceased,
side by side

all comrades,
all summer sundries
on a dancing grass blanket
half-graveyard battlefield, half-heaven

oft I have writ of the beach detritus,
the shells, the sun burnt *****,
a recycled funeral rectory where
no one utters prayers for the
no longer alive historical artifacts

what has this to do
with that human construct,
artifice of memory,
a string on the finger
of the mind,
a pausation, a man-made creation
to momentarily recall another of nature's cycle -
yours

Have children
Am a father
Had a father in my youthful days

this is a boy scout qualification medal,
marker of me as Expert,
permitting me  to commentary
with gravitas
having becoming a grandfather,
I enjoy superstar freedom
to opine inanely on such matters

of my father have I writ,
of my sons, those remain unseen,

likely neither will mark these day
with a telephone call
or an all-I-got-was-this-lousy-t shirt
gift of gall

I say that's ok for what else is there,
certainly not an unthinking, dismissive
whatever

it saddens me some for sure,
but it makes judge myself as human being
on a gradation of one to none

but more than this internal reflection,
I ponder this hallmark'd day,
as life cycle point notarized,
in verse and rhyme,
for that is what I do best

for before,
many father's day in the priory passed,
most unrecallable,
just another ceremonial checkmark,
habitually acquitted,
but somewhere in a drawer of shirts,
in a home I store stuff in,
I do believe, there are some cards
from decades past, that prove nothing,
other than life goes on,
and we best capture
what we can, as best we can...
with small, objet d'art of sorts

Perhaps one will call after all...
in any event,
to honor the dead,
to mark the existing,
the bannered ship's bell rung,
its sonorous sound,
notable and onerous,
fades as well

but man and animal,
plant and tree,
a living fraternal sorority,
who all look over my shoulder
as I compose on
that chair you see

they know,
for whom the bell tolls this day,
and why as well,
as we all pause and contemplate
where we are on this day,
on our own overlapping cycles

— The End —