Sunday, August 25, 2019

2019.08.25 On This Day in 1911................

My father who art in heaven
Hallowed was your name—
    Daddy, then Dad, then mystery itself.

Your kingdom, your will—
            my desire, my hope.

On earth I pursued them
      through tears and fears,   
Urging myself forward
      in silent wonder.

You gave me each day my daily bread,
    my nightly peace.

But I wanted more on earth, not in heaven.

Forgive me my striving, my heart stretched thin with longing,
as I forgive you your alcohol and smokes—stealers of time, dealers of death.
Oh, the agony of watching you die, wrestling with demons,
moaning out your salvation—groan by groan through the night.
    Your own wordless lament.
    Your special prayer: What’s the point?

In such dark moments I knew you knew God
    the same God you’d showed me
    when you gave me my name
    when you nodded a blessing:
        “I understand, Lynda.” 
You owe me no debt
    I owe you my life, my looks, and my smarts.

I guessed your temptations, your trials and your risks.
    You made them yourself. As did I mine.

Thank you, my father, for sharing your
       God and your faith and your shy kind of love.
I longed for more words—but had none myself.
      The problem, dear Daddy? We’re too much alike.

The kingdom, the power, and the glory were yours on earth,
    so I thought. And in heaven?

Grand items like these belong to Mystery alone.
    We couldn’t take more than the glimpses we had, Dad.

Could we?

            Happy 108th Birthday, my father—forever and ever amen.