The book is full of poems about becoming a father for the first time relatively late in life (I was almost 50 when my son was born) as well as poems about my own (late) father who passed away over ½ my life ago. Occasionally, the two themes come together in the same poem as they do in this one:
Your grandson brushed pine needles from your name in the woods,
from the carved stone marker where we buried your ashes.
A grandson you never met, which is all of them, so let me rather say
by my son. I have a son, and we named him after you,
which might be why he cried all night and hardly slept,
or why he swept the granite marker clear, to better see
the letters, or do the math of missing you, by how many years.
He’s quiet now. His tears, like you, are gone.
We came to visit you this morning here
between the old stone wall and the railroad track,
and he cleared your name of needles with his hands.
And then before we left, he put them back.
I’m thrilled to have finally found a publisher for this poems. And to have a little bit of time to add some poems about my DAUGHTER, who is less than seven months old!