Poem: The last time I saw him

The last time I saw him I was defiant,

“Children always love their mothers more,”

I said to him while looking in his eyes.

The last time I visited him in Maryland

I took my 6 yr old son to meet him

for the first and maybe the last time.

He had been telling lies

Telling me to watch out

Saying that my son might

grow up to love his father

more than he loves me.

“Nonsense!”my heart screamed

You don’t know anything about truth

Your hands hit and beat and mangled

Those you were supposed to love

You try to advise me now?

With your pseudo wisdom?

Father, don’t you know how?

True respect has to be earned!

You lost my trust

Since way before I could walk

With your ladies man talk and stupid bravado

You beat and probably raped Mother!

Because she hated and refused you

She was forced to marry you

with a drunken knife at her throat

She ran away and was recaptured.

Family lineage secrets

I like to spill the beans

and shout obscene tirades

in my alter ego writer’s way

tapping out the silent truth

in letters like Morse code

long distance freedom

expose against violence

enforced religion and

hatred against the innocent.

It’s all I have left to do.

Repression and silence will kill you.

Stand on a platform and shout it all out

vent out the truth before it poisons you.

She was brilliant Athena

and he was sadistic Mars.

I saw his brutality everyday

in our concentration camp household.

Whether I say it to his face or not

he was an asshole.

It’ll take more than this lifetime

for me to resolve what happened.

He wants forgiveness, absolution

friendship, loyalty and mercy.

He even said he tried to hang himself

in the doomsday garage

and the rope or the bar broke somehow,

and another time he was accidentally

electrocuted at work but he survived.

“God wants you to stay alive.” I responded

putting my hand on his shoulder for comfort

and he macho pushed my hand away.

What a man child he is!

a Korean Peter Pan, a lost boy in Neverland.

He and I believe in different gods.

Mine lets karma do the timely work

His sells Get out of jail for free cards at

Monopoly church full of propaganda

greed and curse

evil ancient misogyny.

He’s old, gray and alone now

in a big empty nest house of regrets.

Father is the Fool of most of my stories,

poems and memories of growing up abused

in a secret suburban prison called home.

Mom’s finally escaped him.

She goes in and out of California hospitals

with my sister as the attendant nurse

while I hide away in denial and depression.

I’m not ready to lose her

not ready to let her go

not ready to see her because I’m afraid

to say what I could never explain.

I love you Mama,

don’t you know this?

So I stay away in absolute silence and guilt.

She told me through my sister to stay away

and I obey because it’s easy to pretend

Death’s not happening.

Cancer has finally freed her of him

and I always wanted her freedom

even if it would be at our expense

I prayed for her deliverance

but not in this way

55 years later in constant pain.

She moved away for treatment

abandoned him to sit with his worries

and make his own rice

because she’s no longer his servant.

I should feel sorry for him but I don’t.

I’m just fulfilling my role

in the prodigal daughter curse.

Apologies in general

are just words

good but not enough

to overwhelm deeply embedded trauma.

So he can wait and wait forever

but my trust in him is dead

left in my destructive childhood.

I will never return

even though he said

I was his favorite.

It’s not that I don’t love him

that’s past the point.

Time can’t be reversed.

After this lifetime maybe then

we can start to try to mend

the sad horror of this lifetime.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Heart-wrenching, Judy !

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Dennis❤️ I appreciate your comment. I was feeling reflectively sad today and this poem happened.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I might say you speak in tongues here, perhaps: emotional tongues that require no fake translation. They express a soul in a state of grief and trauma, harnessed by the skill of an experienced artist. If only the one who needs to hear would listen and learn. Others will, at any rate.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sweet compliment, thank you for your supportive thoughts.


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