Fathers and Sons

Birthed in promises unspoken, on a bed of dreams and ghosts,
I grasped the pleading in his heart, but faltered at the post;
Desperation’s embattled prayer in a father’s grasp for fate,
For all of that I could have done it’s too little and too late.

Hiding from the ancient child weeping alone inside my head,
Looking down at no one, looking up at those ahead;
Unprepared and unable, wet with shame for shoes unlaced,
For all of that I could have done it’s too little and too late.

Of losses deep and wide, solidly ingrained with paralyzing fear,
Knots that twist and turn and writhe while throwing up cold tears;
Walking in weakness, taunted endlessly by demons in my face,
For all of that I could have done it’s too little and too late.

Catch the ball, don’t turn away, keep your glove upon the ground,
Gritting teeth and pounding fist I chatter the fighting sound;
With fear my guiding light and courage a fleeing mate,
For all of that I could have done it’s too little and too late.

Blazing trails back to myself, withdrawing into my shell,
I’m followed by my shadow a black cloud of my own hell;
The trail’s thick with footprints leading the other way,
For all of that I could have done it’s too little and too late.

Try and try again I scream, someday I must succeed,
To win just once or at least not lose is my burning need;
As though I had not run with withered courage at the bait,
For all of that I could have done it’s too little and too late.

Charging on brave face at last in this my strongest test,
Scars of noble wounds received line the sinews of my chest;
When roll is called I’ll hear with pride named heroes of this date,
For all of that I could have done it’s too little and too late.

At father’s bed I cry, he’s swaddled in crisp, white linen sheets,
I wonder at what lengths I atone until his mercy meets;
I’ve felled my faceless enemy, tasted freedom from self-hate,
For all of that I would have done it’s too little and too late.

8 thoughts on “Fathers and Sons

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