August 2, 2020

To my Absent Parent: What Should I do with all this Pain? {Poem}

I have so many questions.

Come sit with me, and stay for a while.

Let us have this conversation at a distance.

Exactly 35 steps apart.

What does it mean to have a human experience?

In one lifetime, how many mistakes are we allowed to make?

What is the meaning of forgiveness, and who gave us the courage to seek it now?

When a parent chooses to walk away from the flesh they helped to cocreate,

all the ocean’s water won’t be enough to wash away the pain.

Have you ever wondered how our life choices alter someone else’s life?

What should I do with all the shattered glass

that I continue to hold in the palms of my hand?

No matter how many times I glue the pieces together,

the light still shines through the cracks.

So where do we go from here?

I have become the person I am today without you.

It’s not that you didn’t play a role in it.

Unknowingly, you shaped my life.

Because, you see, during my first heartbreak and the other thousands that followed,

you were never there to mend them.

When life hands us hurt and sorrow over and over again,

we eventually learn how to become indestructible.

But if you and I ever decide to do this dance again,

please don’t forget to send me a letter.

“Dear unwanted daughter,

you are a mistake.


an unwilling father-to-be.”

This way, I will not waste my time waiting for you to learn

the drumbeat of my galaxy-filled soul.

So where do we go from here?

I have been told that we are the same, and yet I know we are nothing alike.

We are simply two strangers passing by.

Would you be able to spot me in the crowd?

Or acknowledge that it’s your daughter’s tears shining in the moonlight?

And just like a batman-signal, if I called for your help,

would you recognize my soul’s reflection in the night sky?

So where do we go from here?

You asked me to give you a chance—what a huge responsibility you have placed on me.

I cannot tell you if our journeys will ever coexist,

but maybe a silent walk in the cold evening rain,

exactly 35 steps apart,

can be our first soul conversation.



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