Black Hymns I

There was a time father

when you loved me.


You wrote my name down

on your pillow at night.


You told me your bedtime

stories without a yawn


and you sang my song

before the dawn.


Father, I remember your

six o’clock swill and you falling

pissed into the cat tray at night.


You took me to your place of work,

a newspaper, feral on the ink, with a

smell that got lost in your veins.


And our birthdays were

on the same day and month.


When I was twenty- one

You were fifty.


We were Librans circling each

other like distant planets on the run.


And mercy’s hand you held out to me

all those moons ago


when I was so busy

being young.


There was a time father

when you loved me,



you didn’t need a Bible,

no words of wisdom


from God’s holy mouth,

the dark star of your hopes,

I was your sweet pagan

child running wild.


Oh father, there was a time

when you loved me, and I will


sing my black hymn to you,

till we meet by the edge

of light.

3 thoughts on “Black Hymns I

  1. This one and Black Hymns II struck me. Really, made me tear up! Ok, you see my father died when I was 18, (I wrote a poem for him on my blog “Grayer than Gray Noon”).. Be back to read the rest of your writings, I’m just having a break while at work


  2. just on your comments, i think from my perspective Hymn poems are some of my best, interesting when just fly pass it…for me its about mood, construction, feeling, truth for my father, well it wasn’t a good relationship but he certainly left an imprint…just musing cheers


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