' ' ' ' Close Shave - Sequence(For Miss S) Poem by Dónall Dempsey

' ' ' ' Close Shave - Sequence(For Miss S)

Rating: 2.6

Always her fascination
with me


This her early morning ritual
observing each action

as if it were

I hide my face
in foam.

“Santa Claus! Santa Claus! ”
she chants

winces with delight
as the razor

(she gulps)

goes over my bump
without slicing it off.

The shaving uncovers the me she knows.

“Soft…soft! ”

“Mr. Daddy Soft Soft! ”

she gurgles
in a lather of laughter.

“Me now…now me! ”
she pleads with me.

I take the brush
coat her reflection with foam.

I shave her
with the tip of my little finger.

Her reflection sniggers &
she sniggers too.

Later, in the early evening
she appears
bearded in fresh cream.

She shaves herself
with a lollipop stick.

“Me... Daddy now...see! ”

I cha cha cha her
on the tips of my toes

as she clings to my

dancing around
the living room.

One delighted
half shaved little girl.

One delighted
soft soft Mr. Daddy.



She clutches
her “sticks”

two twisted twigs
she just picked up

but which
to her


All her other toys
just loll around

forgotten now
as the dinosaur

gazing out the window
where she had placed him

to look at clouds
& clap her hands


A rag doll
throws herself across a chair

weeps & tries to

the touch of her hand

the smile that never ceased
to surprise her.

She prods herself
with her twigs

chortles with glee
as the twig sinks in

& the flesh gives way
leaving little designs upon her.

It amuses her the way the skin
reasserts itself & becomes her again

whether it be thigh or belly or knee.

“Me drawing on me
with sticks! ”
she announces proudly.

After investigating her own skin
she investigates mine & Mummy’s

delighted with our
ows & ouches

that she “draws” out of us.

“Oh...ouches! ”
she smiles fascinated

that it also
elicits sounds.

And now our little explorer

(still clutching)

(her sticks)


precious objects.


most precious



Our sleeping
naked bodies

nothing but
mere landscape

hills & dales of flesh
to be tramped across

by the tiny patter
of your little feet

as they trample
upon my balls

sit on Mummy’s
left tit

we both come awake
in total shock.

“Want a cuddle! ”
you announce
in your imperious tones

& despite our
obvious pain

we acquiesce at once
drag you in

slaves to your love
wrap our warmth & our flesh
about you

And soon
all 3 of us

snoring now

as if we were
The 3 Bears

of the story I had read to you

the night before.



The years
cover them

as much as
this rich earth

her memories
we dig up

& there
they are

good as new

all the things that
used to be you

in a box.

Even the calligraphy
survives the years:


Your teenage self
takes your 3 year old

left blue shoe

cradles it
in your hand.

You have no
memory of it

only us
telling you

the story of
the memory of

How the right blue shoe
was irretrievably lost

on holiday
floated out
to sea

by a so curious you.

Somewhere before the horizon
sinking out of view.

But you wouldn’t
relinquish the left
(and what it meant.)

How you
wouldn’t go to sleep
without it

clutched in your grasp
for a year or more

until we
buried it in this

box of Tilly

A broken rattle
wrapped in silence

a chipped glass heart
wrapped in pink & blue tissue paper

a magnetic elephant
clinging for dear life

to the bottom
of the box


I watch you
cry for you

(and I cry too)

for your forgotten self

big unreal
tears plashing

into your open palm

as you
retrieve from Time

the things
that were yours

your frail body
sobbing against my shoulder

like you used
to do

when you
were my little girl

a left blue shoe
clutched in your hand


as you attend
the resurrection of the you

never knew

until now.



I wait
for your awakening.

And yes, there are
things I could be(should be) doing.


Now I find
I can’t do anything

without you

and your constant
interrupting of my known world

with the simple fact
of yourself.

I wait
for you to wake

so you
can exist me

bring me
into being.

You stumble
towards me as if sleep

were a net
that still entangled you

placing yourself
against my shoulder

name me
to make me real.

I heave you up
against my shoulder

the little heft of you
the perfect weight of you

like a dream
that has come true

dribbling my name down the back
of my open necked shirt.

I attempt to
dress you

in the necessary clothes
that constitute a walk in the park

but to you
clothes are playthings.

You wear
your pink teddy bear knickers

on your head
big bunches of hair

sticking out where
the legs should be

as you wee wee
over my hand.

“Oh naughty wee wee! ”
you chastise yourself.

I take
an age

amazed at what
Mummy can do in a minute or two.

with only your eyes showing

I strap in
my little Ninja

& we go
visit the trees & squirrels & swings.

You want to know if
it is a girl squirrel.

I can’t tell
but tell you that it is.

A bird sits
on the swing

beside the swing
you swing upon.

You accept it
not as a bird

but as a fellow

learning the ways
of this alien world

& how
to control

a Daddy

so he does
exactly what you

wish him
to do.



I love
the lullaby of you.

Your voice
cuddles me.

Your laughter
swoops like a swift

little bird
alighting upon

my attention.

Your name
comforts me.

Your words
drip like a honey

I can almost

Your smile
caresses me.

My name
trickling across your tongue

explodes like fireworks
from brain cell to brain cell.

Your beauty
catches my breath

as if you blew gently
across my face.

I am lost
in a sea of you

caught up &
swept away

by everything
anything you do.

I only
a new born father

just getting
used to

the wonder
of you

my little girl.


A strand
of light blonde hair

gently blown
back & forth

across your amazed face

by your own breath

held now
in wonderment

as you watch
in the tiny compact world of the pot

the first little
green hair

sprout tentatively
from the black earth

remembering the time
we too

planted it

not knowing
the when or how

it would grow
into oh...
...such wonder

turning your baby blues up at me
barely capable of speaking the words

your mouth
full of awe

you explaining it
back to me:

“It growed...oh...it growed! ”


She takes an old broken cracked conch shell
a dried up Corsican starfish

sand from her backyard sandpit(slightly damp)

dumps them all on her nice clean new sheets.

“I’m bringing the seaside to bed! ”
she announces

her creation
(like a little God) .

Hours later I peeped in

to find her
asleep by her seaside

Dreaming it...for real.

I tuck her & her seaside up

against the coming cold

tiptoe away

trying not wake


Bri Edwards 09 December 2017

My first visit to your site. I enjoyed my first visit. Poem(s) to MyPoemList. I may return later with more comments. I DID read them all. I especially enjoyed tales of blue shoes and seashore to bed. Are poems drawn from your experiences as a dad? ? One omission i think in 2nd to last line. Bri :)

0 0 Reply
Scarlett Treat 01 July 2008

I am debating as to which I love more...the beauty of the child's mind...or the beauty of the mind of Mr. Daddy, who can write it all down. Both, in my mind, near perfection. Thank you, Sweetheart, for this 'song of delight! ' Scarlett

0 0 Reply
Onelia Avelar 11 June 2008

One delighted soft soft Mr. Daddy...writing delightfully about every form of love!

0 0 Reply
Dónall Dempsey

Dónall Dempsey

Curragh Camp, Co. Kildare, Eire.
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