My friend Laraine Herring's book, Lost Fathers, arrived in the mail today. Laraine is a brave and beautiful writer, and it's a thrill to see her amazing work make its way into the world. The book's subtitle is How Women Can Heal from Adolescent Father Loss; I know it's going to be an important and healing resource for so many women. Laraine weaves a lot of her own experience, and her own gorgeous poetry, into the book. Here's a sample:
It is only a few moments
on the clock of my life.
Each year that passes increases the space
between when we were family
and when you were dead.
The who I was when we were family
stopped moving somewhere on the way out of the coffin
toward the sunflower field.
It is very gray here
because even though the clock stops
time still passes
and gray looks like blue or yellow or green
whether my eyes are open or closed.
It’s the same.
Oh god, is that comfortable.
Let me sleep here wrapped in the gauze of my wounds.
When the coffin is closed
and gray turns black I will scarcely notice
the colors that dance on the black canvas spinning away.
I will have died with you,
your skeleton locked around me.
If only you would move your arm I could stretch,
but you can’t because you’re dead
and I, dutiful daughter,
will never break that bone.
Those last lines give me chills every time I read them.