Thursday, June 18, 2020

Happy Fathers Day!

Here are some of the fathers in my family.

As I celebrate these lovely men, I don't think it diminishes their achievements to remember that the opportunities they enjoyed were not open to all fathers.

I think about this poem by African-American poet 
Robert Hayden

Those Winter Sundays

Sundays too my father got up early 
and put his clothes on in the blueblack cold, 
then with cracked hands that ached 
from labor in the weekday weather made 
banked fires blaze. No one ever thanked him. 

I’d wake and hear the cold splintering, breaking. 
When the rooms were warm, he’d call, 
and slowly I would rise and dress, 
fearing the chronic angers of that house, 

Speaking indifferently to him, 
who had driven out the cold 
and polished my good shoes as well. 
What did I know, what did I know 
of love’s austere and lonely offices?

1 comment:

  1. I have always appreciated that Robert Hayden poem. Thank you. I had the privilege of meeting him at Oberlin in the early 60's where he read some of his work and talked with the students. He was every bit as lovely and erudite as his poetry.


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