No, there are no commas in that title. It is not a list. Although it could be, now that I think of it. So let’s leave the ambiguity, and the possibility of multiple meaning on the table, shall we?
It was Father’s Day on Sunday here in the sunny Sometimes-United States of Americans. It was supposed to rain, but the Pizza Patio Gods were with us and we were able to sit out on the patio overlooking the beautiful West Branch of the Susquehanna, just upriver from Lock Haven University. The owner of the joint (the pizza shop, not the university), wants us to do a commercial for him because I said this: “On Father’s Day we come to Pizza City; On birthdays we come to Pizza City; On Tuesday. . . we come to Pizza City.” Now in my defense, Michelle Obama, they do have salads there, and we really do not go every Tuesday. Probably two to three times per month, and with their prices and quality, it’s frankly good for the economy, our family’s and Pizza City’s.
The poems being read before food arrived were from the spring edition of Word Fountain where two of my pieces were published, and the lively poetry discussion revolved around a “professional” reading Micah and I sat in on last week at a local prestigious university. As I promised in a previous post, more on that coming up. Beware, I’m gearing up for a poetry rant.
Father Poems from a Friend
As you can imagine, I have quite a few Father-y poems, but I’d like to share a few from two other poets, one I haven’t met, but am just beginning to read and admire, and one with whom I’ve had the joy of reading this past summer and fall, and whom my oldest son has had the honor having as a professor, Marjorie Maddox. Here’s the audio clip from their program this past Father’s Day Sunday on WPSU‘s Take Note radio program. So give a listen and let’s extend the holiday just a bit.
I’ll be posting a bit more about Marjorie soon, especially regarding her upcoming new book of poems called Local News from Someplace Else. It’s slated to come out in July and I’m looking forward to writing a review! Speaking of that, if you or someone you know has a book of poems coming out that you think I’d find interesting, please let me know, as I have been pondering for some time dipping my toes into the reviewing pool.
Back to the Dad’s Day topic
Now the family joke for us from the scene pictured above was of course, “Hey, Dad, thanks for taking us out for Father’s Day!” And it’s funny, one of the young guys at work on Monday asked me, “What did you get for Father’s Day?” What did I get? I had to chuckle, because although it was an innocent enough question, it was much like one little boy asking another little boy if he got a Red Rider BB Gun for Christmas.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Dads don’t really want anything for Father’s Day. Correct me, fellow dads if I am wrong. Maybe it’s just because in our family the budget is tight enough that I don’t expect it. Or maybe it is because my own father has reached the point in life that if he really wanted anything he’d have bought it himself, and at a good price. In fact if I buy anything for him these days it’s a gift card to eat at a favorite restaurant. Once for his birthday I gave him a little collection of poems, mostly about family, that I thought he would like.
And sure, making something for Dad is great, especially when the kids are young. But. . . and maybe I’m bragging here a bit, but I seem to have over the years with my three sons developed such a relationship that it is fed on a weekly if not daily basis, depending on when we are in the same place, over dinner, them in their rooms upstairs here at my house, or visiting them at their mother’s–even chats on Skype, Facebook and once upon a time, AIM (Does anyone still use that?).
The daily “gifts” may be hearing my son Jonathan play guitar, or watching him beam proudly as he says that he was once again the champion at a Magic card tournament. It might be a new poem on Micah’s blog, or his asking to come along to an event at the gallery. It could even be Josiah, my oldest, making me proud as he tells me a funny story about the little girl he tutors after class, or taking the time to forward a joke online.
And yes, things like seeing all three of my sons, without any suggestion or expectation from me, change their Facebook profile pictures to HRC campaign equal signs to voice their support for marriage equality. That sort of thing brings a tear to dad’s eyes, you bet.
It’s also good for the soul to see them help their mother when she needs it, and it’s a joy to hear them and my partner Brian talking about music, Magic, politics, and other shared interests.
In short, I’ve already been given all the father’s gifts I could want. I’m so very fortunate and blessed to have these things in my life on a regular basis. So, my sons, get the card if you must. I’d rather have you save a couple of bucks and pitch in for the pizza! 😉