Saturdays With Father 2

I locate now those long afternoons with my father
as my first acquaintance with terror.
I was mortally afraid of those women
and their power over him

Fearful of their casual,
coy, closely guarded secrets,
Their lady fingers, their lady slippers,
their perfumed bodies.

I am riveted to the spot—
to the slurred voices,
to the songs,
to the demented laughs.
The intimate conversations—

They may as well be speaking in another language—
That wavering and murmuring dialog.

I’d imitate later
their despised honey voices
and idiocies,

So as to punish my father
and in some way
keep him indebted to me,
along with all the others he owed things to.

He never knew in those years
when I might speak,
or what I might say.
I, his small, perverse jailer.
He, prisoner of this child.

Through these amorous routines,
she works out complex algebraic equations,
or reads Shakespeare and Eliot and Descartes,

Or composes haiku on her arms,
Trying to force the world into seventeen syllables.
Weird quiet girl. Deserted. Marooned.

Poetry by Ashe The PoetBay support member heart!
Read 365 times
Written on 2015-12-04 at 16:11

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Jamsbo Rockda The PoetBay support member heart!
The world around must have been too traumatizing for you to accept. That is sad. But your intelligence was so great and you hid beneath its blankets. So did I in a way. Though not in intelligence but more in entertainment. It helped with my forced isolation. But made me slightly mad I think. This is sad to read. I am so sorry you went through it all.

Lawrence Beck The PoetBay support member heart!
There is so much to like in this poem! The fine descriptions of your father's sleazy, drunken lovers. The description of yourself, mocking your father, basically blackmailing him, doing whatever you can to avoid thinking about what your he and those women are doing

one trick pony The PoetBay support member heart!
part one seemed to be your observations, the world through the eyes of a bewildered child. part two is the revelation of effects of nightmarish and still bewildering events.

this is vivid, and surreal, and without self-pity. almost the opposite. the child feels herself odd for withdrawing into something, some things, of her own that made sense.

strong writing, an unforgettable recounting.