Tag Archives: my dad

Day 9: Be Peaceful

I saw my father’s spirit
shortly after he passed away.

In my life I never saw
in his countenance
a man relaxed so fully.
He always seemed to be
on ‘go’ or ‘fast forward’.
Whenever he would get sick,
he still seemed hurried, urgently
working to recover.

This visit he sat with me
against my meditation tree.
Such peace did he exude
it infused me with calm,
pulling me outside of time, speech.
And I knew he was in a far better place.
No worries, hurries, or any unrest
showed in him. In fact
his message to me was
to take it easy, get some rest.

© 2010 Shari Lynne Smothers

Day 9 prompt: Two for Tuesday, write a ‘slow down’ or a ‘never slow down’ poem, or both; details here from 2010 November PAD Chapbook Challenge

Extra Smiles

At the table
at my cousin’s
wedding reception,
I sat with
my brothers, my
mother, more cousins and
sisters-in-law
a niece and nephew.

In a room
full of family
friends, all cheerful
and sharing
eating and laughing.

But
I was also
off in an alternate
reality,
dancing with my dad
as he always did
at celebrations.

Beyond wondering
at the exact look of his joy
had he lived to see
his favorite niece
on her day,
I wondered what
it might have been like
had he the chance
to give me away.

No regrets really
that it never happened
for me, for us.
It was just
my imagination
bringing me
extra smiles that evening.

© 2010 Shari Lynne Smothers

Day 3 prompt: Write a ‘location’ poem. See the details here 2010 November PAD Chapbook Challenge

Old Poems

Lines versified
cut to take shape of
lips of a last kiss good-bye.
Words record the song
played as I drove away
to my separate destiny.
Rhythms played the hurt
of my heartache
as I fought to continue on
not undo my journey.

Old poems
hold the bitter sweet marrow
until I return to them
remembering experiences wholly
and can smile anyway.

© 2010 Shari Lynne Smothers

This poem is for the napowrimo prompt #30, free day (and farewell). Visit the post to see the details of this prompt.

Since we could choose anything to write about, I thought I’d extol the virtues of old poems.

Smells like Home

I remember fragrance.
He liked subtle colognes.
Different ones,
each complemented
what was uniquely him.
It was the smell
of church Sunday morning.
The smell I breathed in
when he helped me inside
after I fell off my bicycle.

And the smell of him
when he returned home
from a business trip.
He had hugs
and kisses all around.
And conversations for mom.
They exchanged
home updates and trip recaps
while my brothers and I
rummaged through
the designated suitcase for souvenirs.
I got T-shirts neatly packed.

I put them in my shirt drawer
so it smelled of
dad, security, home.

Interestingly now,
some odd days
a look in my neatly folded
t-shirt drawer
catches me up in a whirlwind
that blows in the memories
that trigger the familiar,
missed scent that was my dad’s
and I’m home wherever I land.

© 2010 Shari Lynne Smothers

This poem is for the napowrimo prompt #16, what’s that smell Visit the post to see the details of this prompt.

I Knew

I’ll never forget the day—

After doctor visits
just me and him or with other family
in hospitals and waiting rooms,
examinations, procedures, and treatments
hours spent in fruitless and unavoidable worry,
we finally got the doctor’s
last words on the matter;

Whatever they decided to do
whatever dad accepted to be put through
he didn’t have much time to be here with us,
they were sure they couldn’t fix him.

My life moving on felt like
a betrayal to dad who’s life was coming to a close
and everything was heavier.
Still, I continued doing what I knew I had to
placing everything I could on my automatic list,
with breathing and swallowing
because everything I thought to do
became easier to just skip it.

And then one shimmering
breezy September afternoon,
I was driving alone when I laughed aloud
and had to admit it—
I can’t recall the song, joke
or thought that brought me to it,

but that was the day I knew
that even through my profound grief
over the impending loss of my father,
in my soul I would eventually know joy again.

©2009 Shari Lynne Smothers

Prompt: Write a poem about a memorable person or event. Day 30 of the 2009 November PAD Chapbook Challenge, from Poetic Asides.

The Little Things

His snappy two-toned glasses
people knew him by
that sat on one end-table
and his brown briefcase that stood table-side,
can only channel his countenance as
my dad’s no longer here to use them.

Mom has moved them now
but these and other little things
that spark so many memories,
I hang onto
and quietly cherish them.

©2009 Shari Lynne Smothers

Prompt: Write a hanging poem. This is my poem for Day 15 of the November PAD Chapbook Challenge 2009, from Poetic Asides