Sunday, June 20, 2010

for Father's Day

EDWARD NAVIN BURKE
(1923 -1995)

Never blind to their light
but always reaching for it,
the way garden flowers
lean to the sun to issue forth
pro genies of design,
distinct chips of an
ironwood block shaping themselves
in the rooms you imagined.

Shaving in the bathroom
with the door open,
and singing
that you love Paris
in the winter
when it's snowing
although we lived
along Detroit freeways
thinking Westward and onward
until California was the place
where The Motor City drove us.

The lives you gave us
with the breaths you took,
our faces having divided
the b est of your features
in the children
that follows the best we've
been doing.
Somewhere in history
someone will always look like you.
Light comes into all the rooms
from all the sunshine
that covers the green mountains
like glowing shawls of rapture
that are the beaded notes
of the Paris you loved
and imagined,
you eyes blue as burnt ash
arranging the forms of the world
in new configurations
always, surprising as trick knees
and the lurch of love
that is bottomless
and full of a world.

I have your hair
but none of your combs,
I have your eyes
but none of your vision,
I am myself all of you in the making,
grey hair and trick knees.

We stand here where you brought us
in rooms that
are signed with your name,
you've done all the work
you had to.

Our shoulders are broad and we stand erect,
somewhere in history,
someone will
always look like you.



--9-23-95