Nancy Vorkink

Rookie (New York)

May 6,1911 - Poem by Nancy Vorkink

The bristle and the bark
Scared us children
Why did he yell so, and
Why did he get so mad,
His face turned red,
We felt unsafe.

Father took off, just took off
Down the dirt road
With a bruising sudden departure
And left us behind.
Mother said,
He’ll come back
He’ll come back.

When he drove back
His face red now with remorse
And sagging with fresh tears
Gave us big hugs
And said how sorry he was.
We were confused.

Years later,
His rages persisted
So did his love
Somewhere inside buried
Was a Java thorn
Prickly, hurt, alive.

When he died-
We children lamented how
His father tormented him
Whipped him
Disgraced him
Left him $1.00.

That was a strange legacy
Of fathers.

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, May 6, 2006

Poem Edited: Thursday, July 22, 2010

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