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Dreams of My Father

Once I was a quick chickadee
hiding above you, peeping
through a dense cluster of red

maple leaves. Your sparse
hair tufted from
the bulge of your skull,

your body seemed a boney
extension of the tree
stump on which you sat.

Shifting sunlight reflected
off the rifle barrel resting
across stick-thin thighs.

You sat motionless, oblivious
to fall’s finale blazing
around you. A sudden crack

of thunder was followed by
the cessation of all sound.
Your body, headless now,

slumped onto a mossy bed,
draining sheets of crimson
over the silvery-green cover.

Bits of bone, chunks of brain
matter, streaks and blotches
of blood mixed with autumn

hues, turning the sunny
afternoon into a surreal scene
from a gruesome horror film.

In the distance I heard
the loudening laughter of children
walking home from school.


  1. Margaret on

    Thanks Deborah. I feel the same way about so many of your poems!

  2. Margaret on

    Thank you Hamid. This poem was in me for a long time before I was able to write it.

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