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On a Thursday Afternoon

Posted on August 2, 2011

I never knew the father, but I
had meant to shake his hand.
I’d see him every day as we passed each other, each
designated to a disjoined destination but destined to destiny all the same.

The news came in hot sirens on a
Thursday afternoon.

The kid was only eleven, which
by today’s standards made him thirteen with
all the intelligence those Microsoft mainframes and
PS3 games could possibly instate in his small, but developing mind.

He was a typical kid,
or so I have been told, with
Guitar Hero aspirations that
meant more than life,
more than dogs,
more than tire swings set in place by
a father I knew but I did not know.

The news came in hot sirens on a
Thursday afternoon.

His life ahead and
his childhood not far behind, still
swinging on tire swings set in place by
a father I knew but I did not know.

He left his swing, he
Chased his friend, he
Fell in the street where
He shook hands with
A DUI destiny who
Could not see the
Small blurred shape
Darting from
a tree.

Sirens and sirens
on a hot Thursday afternoon.

The father I knew but I did not know with
The hand I never shook now
Shook with an anger, and
Shook with a sadness no
Father should ever know, and I
Shook with compassion, I
Shook in empathy and I
Knew that he knew I
Have been there too, and we’re all
designated to a disjoined destination but destined to destiny all the same.

Last edited by Damian on August 2, 2011, 5:46 am


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One response to “On a Thursday Afternoon”

  1. Poetry and music have themes in common.
    We, the readers, are free to take out of it what we wish.  I don’t profess to completely understand every nuance, but I’m with you on many of the themes.
    This part is excellent:

    He left his swing, he
    Chased his friend, he
    Fell in the street where
    He shook hands with
    A DUI destiny who
    Could not see the
    Small blurred shape
    Darting from
    a tree.

    I tend to marvel at what I refer to as the "Fundamental Absurdity of Man".
    The Ken Lays of this world, the totally disgraced former head of Enron, telling his life long employees to hold onto their stock, even buy more, while he was dumping his. The soon-to-be-dead Ken Lay, photographed with his wife, leaving court, a tired, sick, broken, burned out shell of the former bon vivant high living conman charmer.
    In your poem, I sense echoes not of Enron, and Ken Lay, but of the underlying tragedy of Man.

    His life ahead and
    his childhood not far behind, still
    swinging on tire swings set in place by
    a father I knew but I did not know.

    At the same time, you touch delicately on what we weary cynics look towards as our source of hope, and dare I use such a atrophied cliche, our inspiration.
    Simple Human Compassion…

    The father I knew but I did not know with
    The hand I never shook now
    Shook with an anger, and
    Shook with a sadness no
    Father should ever know, and I
    Shook with compassion, I
    Shook in empathy and I  
    Knew that he knew I
    Have been there too, and we’re all
    designated to a disjoined destination but destined to destiny all the same.

    Good poem. Good music. Good theme.

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