Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tuesday Poem: "Poem on My Father's Birthday"

On the train to Haifa
I think about my father
in wartime Palestine,
a different time, a different name
but the same place.

His memories of oranges and beaches
and warm, Mediterranean swimming
are the times he chose to rescue
from the six years when the world
was drowning in its own blood.

The weather is blue and grey
but the sun shines
like my father’s medals
on his blue-grey air force uniform
that entranced me as a child.

As the helicopter gunships prowl over Mount Carmel,
speeding north to Lebanon,
I wonder what times I will choose to rescue
from a land built out of longing,
but paid for in blood.

The poet wishes to acknowledge The Press in whose pages this poem first appeared.


  1. This poem is so rich, and yet is constructed with such brevity of language. Thanks for posting, Andrew!

  2. Thanks, Elizabeth. I know this comment is late in coming, but it is nice to get feedback. I was very close to my Dad as you might glean from this poem. Merry Christmas.