Thursday, June 12, 2008

Dads, Part VI: First Light and As a Grandpa Does His Own (Poems)

Two more poems exploring different aspects of fatherhood. This first is representative of those moments when an infant wakes up at or before dawn. The second of the way fatherhood's reach extends into lives beyond the dad's family.

First Light

The cadence of your legs
draws me from my dreams and I
slip into the chill of dawn to
warm you back to sleep.

Slicing shadow with the hallway’s
light, I crack your door.
This sliver carved in your morning,
you track me through wooden bars.

For a moment, I return to your birth,
when I stood at your mother’s feet
and saw the sliver of your head, crowned

in blood, before your first breath
pierced morning and set my pulse
to the rhythms of your life.


As a Grandpa Does His Own

(For Delbert Eugene Beck, Sr.
March 4, 1922-May 12, 2006)

I was a boy; you
a graying man who
scooped me into your care
at church. Week after week
you whispered meaning
into my understanding,
showing how a father’s faith
can extend
across pews and blood-lines
to adopt those not of his seed.

Originally published in
Irreantum: A Review of Mormon Literature and Film, 8.1 (2006): 97.