Tithes & Offerings

Finding Peace With My Father

woman
Courtesy of Pinterest

I am not searching
For my kin
Men give me hives
And women drive me crazy

You wanted me
Settled by now —
Baby hipped, bare feet
No cause for
Questions

But, I am full of
Questions
All needing answers.
I hold back.
Every year, I chicken out.
Clucked by the best, my
Demons fester and you
Pop up when I
Am trying to understand
Where to go from here.

The path I have taken
Only leads me to
The same circle I have
Met for 25 years,
Incomplete.
I step out of the circle,
Refusing its enclosure,
I draw a line.

You cannot cross it.

My heart blocks
The pain of a
Lost child begging to
Be understood, wanting
To be heard in the
Noisy body of
Cheerful congregations.
They pass
Our family secrets around
In the collection plate.

One drops a 20.
He needs change.
He knows our story
From front to back,
I do not sit next to him.
Each secret floats, heavy
Like coins, clinging
To musty bills,

Testimonies are next.

You say, “I have a confession
To make. I love my children.
I would die without them.
I could die without them.
Nothing has changed.”
You are happy.
Beaming, proud Daddy
Wishing to knee-us-up
And bounce us until
We lose ourselves.

I see your happiness.
I reach into my clutch
As the plate comes around,
Pull out a smile
And I tell my neighbor,
“Pass it along.”


Originally published on June 18, 2017, via Medium. Happy Father’s Day!

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