Poetry, notes, and drawings by William Michaelian
Yes. Exactly so.Fine write William.
William, my dear friend. These beautiful words that you have written are exactly the way that I have been feeling since my father-in-law passed away.Because I have been feeling so low, I felt that I needed to start a fresh new blog and you found me again...I am so grateful.Thank you, Jan
I am too, Jan. I will always be grateful, and honored, to call you Friend.I’ve thought of you a lot since your father-in-law’s passing.And this little poem — not that poems should, or can, ever be measured — happens on the eighteenth anniversary of my father’s passing.My very best to you, and thanks, too, as always.
Interesting coincidence (again). My father passed away a little over eighteen years ago as well. I wrote this poem for him.ConstellationsMy father, the pilot, taught methe names of the stars:Betelgeuse, Sirius, Rigel, Polaris.He taught me all the constellations:Orion & Leo, Pegasus, Centaurus,the eternal portraits of imaginationpainted on the infinity of dark.I was only three or four when,just before sleep, he came into my room.He told me that he would be home soon,that he had to leave to hang the moon.The next night I’d ask my grandmotherto take me outside to see “the moom”,so I could be sure that he really wasstill up there.Long after the B-17s and the DC-3s,but before his beloved 707’s,my father flew the magnificent old three-tailedConstellations, and many souls were carriedover empty seas, along the edgeof the heavens, presidents and kings and VIPs,in skies then just as empty.And now at night when I look upI think of him and all the constellations.I wonder how, after all these years,they’ve never changed,how all he ever taught me is still true.I look up at the moon and imaginewhat distant seas are flown,what stars now skirted by his wings,now that I’m sure that he really isstill up there.Copyright 2008 – Softwood: Seventy-eight Poems, Gary B. FitzgeraldCopyright 2010 – Ponds and Lawns: New and Corrected Poems, Gary B. Fitzgerald
Ah. Good. I remember this one, of course. Thanks, Gary.
.Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good NightDo not go gentle into that good night,Old age should burn and rave at close of day;Rage, rage against the dying of the light.Though wise men at their end know dark is right,Because their words had forked no lightning theyDo not go gentle into that good night.Good men, the last wave by, crying how brightTheir frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,Rage, rage against the dying of the light.Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,Do not go gentle into that good night.Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sightBlind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,Rage, rage against the dying of the light.And you, my father, there on that sad height,Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.Do not go gentle into that good night.Rage, rage against the dying of the light. - Dylan Thomas
Beautiful, William! I have a poem in my out-of-print Bed of Coals (though it's coming back next year) about a swing set built without "the right tools." An oblique homage to my Dad, who always had the right tools, and when he didn't, always went out and bought or borrowed the right ones—unlike his dream- ridden, word-besotted eldest son!Here's one for the mix here, from Thread of the Real:DaysThe backs of my father’s hands,splashed with bruises … the dreamhad scrubbed them clean. His heartwas healed, and the raw gravelgrinding down his knee jointshad been washed away. I thoughtthat for the first time in yearshis ears could catch sparrow song,chitter of squirrels, faint breathof a breeze in the shadowy treesaround his garden. I saw him crouchto test a tomato’s redness, then standup easily, giving it a few days more.Months later that simple imagecan sting my eyes until they glisten,seeing how the dream had granted himdays without end.
I love it. Thanks, Joe. And I’m glad you did add it to the mix. And I remember it as well. From Songs and Letters:Still FarmingOn my knees, planting flowers on the rough clay slopenext to the driveway at my mother’s house, trowel in hand,dirt under my fingernails, sweat dripping from my brow,I suddenly sense my dead father behind me and sayout loud, “That’s right, I know you’re there.”Still farming, that old man of mine. Can’t resist the callof planting time, the scented earth, the feel of tender leaves.
.I Don’t Have A SonI don’t have a son.I’ve never been a father.But if I had, they said,I’d have been a good one.But I was a son once, young,and had a good father, too,with whom no wasted timewas ever spent.But if I had a sonI’d tell him the truth,which my father never did…that life goes fast by.You won’t believe itwhen you’re twenty,but at fifty you’ll wonderwhere he went.Copyright 2010 – Ponds and Lawns: New and Corrected Poems, Gary B. Fitzgerald
Gary: Thanks again.
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