Saturday, 26 September 2009

dad, will you walk one more time with me?

nostalgia was never so strong
or maybe it was but I kept putting it off
that battered first aid box triggered it
those small bottles, expired medicines
yellowed non-sticky band-aids
showed my neglect
that walking stick portruding from underneath my bed
accused me no end
(if it could have walked by itself it would have beat me)
old letters, stained with time and grime
that bent spectacle case
(I wonder what had made me keep those?)

moving house has not made any difference
I still find you in its corners
in the books I read
in the poetry I write
your translated work in those old notebooks
(I promise I will publish those one day)
in my typing skill
(like you I am also one finger typist)
the way I push my food in my plate
drink my tea lukewarm
walk in long strides
and pause sometimes too
thinking why I am here

yes, I breathe, I eat, I live
I do everything I used to do when you were there
I laugh, I enjoy life
pleasure of time I had with you
pain of losing you
balance out each other
I am left with a zero
(is it good, is it bad?)
each day of the seven plus years
I have missed you
yet felt your presence too

if nostalgia had colours, it would be like this
each moment sad, each moment cheesy
dad, will you walk one more time with me?


I have been thinking of my dad for somedays now. Today it all came out in this poem. Raw and visceral. My dad passed away in May 2002. The pain has not disappeared. In the journey of life, it recedes for a while and comes back at the most vulnerable of moments.

I post this for ThomG too, who lost his father recently.


  1. A touching heartfelt post. Made me think of my own parents.

  2. Really moving words.Am sure hes around you as you said, walking with you and making you write such wonderful poems.

    Blessings of yesterday, i count today and treasure.

  3. Nicely expressed - I like to think that we experience these reminders when we need a strength or comfort that those we lost represent.

    It is at times hard to distinguish - isn't it?

    He must have been a wonderful presence in your life for you to find him everywhere.


  4. I can really relate to your moving words. A lovely poem.

  5. I will always remember the last walk...with my children holding onto his elbows they wandered through the neighborhood talking of this and that. It is a wonderful memory.


  6. A wonderful tribute, Gautami. It sounds like your dad was an interesing man, one many of us would have enjoyed knowing.

  7. This pulled at my heart. My dad is still with me but he is 82 and has mini-strokes on regular basis. I know his time with me is limited. I know I will have the same pain and memories you expressed so well.

  8. ..thank u for sharing this ..

    this is beautiful ..

  9. Touching poem, with its own colours.

  10. Your poem is filled with the little things that trigger memory and wishes. I encounter those little triggers to and my father passed away in 1997. Very nice poem about the work of grief.

  11. Your words...straight to the heart, flies to heaven you know, there is happy dad up there, right now

  12. This hit home for me, having lost two close family members this year.
    "I still find you in its corners"...
    We keep being reminded of them through the smallest, mundane things, triggers to memory that can take us off guard when we least expect it.

  13. As I type this comment I have tears... What a wonderful poem and such heart-wrenching/tugging images from your words. I lost my dad in 1990 and my mom last Oct. and I think of them always- some times more than always. It's the little things that trigger the memories for me, more than the big ones. Thank you for this moving poem~

  14. a very sad poem.. touching & heartfelt like Anthony says...

    indeed he must be very close to you!
    nicely done!

  15. I kept my Daddy's glasses and other bots and pieces just like you.
    Thank you for sharing & coming to visit my scribble.

  16. Lovely poem--I liked the zero and color with two meanings. It is always sad when they're gone.

  17. I love how you mention so many little, particular things. They create starbursts of images!

    My dad died back in '97 and I know exactly what you mean!

  18. The people we lose are with us always through our memories and the belongings of theirs we choose to keep. Your poem is a very touching way of remembering your father.

  19. sentiment is a color, for sure--thank you for this, Gautami--

  20. I love the old letters line. perhaps because I have my dad's letters. Both my parents are gone and I still feel them loss of them. Very touching, today. Thanks,

  21. My goodness, this is such an emotional and moving piece.Your love shone through.

    PS. I promise I understood it!

  22. Your poem is a nice memoir.

    I also like the explanation of your poem, though. When you talk about the pain of losing a loved one receding, and returning - I liked that. We've all lost a loved one, some of us not quite so permanently, and so we can all relate, though to varying degrees.

  23. That was so lovely Tami. It made my own memories awaken.

  24. Heart rending, tender, and beautiful. I can feel the loss and longing.

  25. Very poignant and evocative tribute Guatami.
    My Dad too passed away exactly a year ago.

  26. Beautiful poem G. The little memories we have are a treasure.

  27. my daddy passed away on 8th feb this year.
    this braught tears in my eyes..

  28. Mrs. Jim tells me that if I don't get my junk cleaned up and a lot out, she will just have to throw it all away when I die.
    Or the kids will have to do that if she dies first.
    I always though that was cruel for her to say that but now I see it is hard for spouses or kids to do it.
    Beautifully written.

  29. Oh, if only...! Touching, moving and heart reaching.

  30. Girl,i almost had tears reading this!
    You have captured all the emotions so well...
    Thanks for sharing something so wonderful.

  31. What a wonderful tribute to one's father. It touched my heart ..

  32. i like the little details you mentioned, the little idiosyncrasies that makes a person so special.

    your post makes me think about my dad too, and how i miss him.

    a very touching post.

  33. very wonderful that you were so close and that, as painful as it may to come upon them, you have so much evidence at your fingertips of your dad's life.

  34. This is a wonderful tribute to your father...I miss mine.

  35. We never get over missing our loved ones. This is a beautiful tribute to your dad.

  36. yes, nostalgia and memories have their own way, their own rhythms, wonderful piece.

  37. This was so brought a lump to my throat. A heartfelt poem, and I'm so glad you shared it.