The morning air is thick with old dreams and ghosts.
It hangs like a cowl.
The sun is black.
A good man is dead.
But not you. I heard about how you broke your nose when you fell down drunk on your face and I heard about how you cursed my mother and I heard about how you forgot that I was your daughter.
Last night I wept in my sleep.
It was like drowning.
A good man is dead because his sadness devoured him. He had a man like you in his life. Each week we met in a room and listened. Last night he wasn’t there. Last night my brother told me that you fell down drunk and broke your nose and had the shakes by noon.
I have a lover who helps me realize that my heart is large and plump and happy.
And I wanted to introduce him to you.
And I wanted you to be happy for me.
But you called me and left a message for someone else. I called you but you didn’t answer. A good man is dead. You didn’t come to my graduation. You didn’t see me become a doctor. You never chose me unless it was to knock me down.
And I accept that I will never be the daughter you wanted.
I would rather be who I am
even though I weep
for a good man
I barely knew,
even though sometimes
I still miss
I never had.