Jerry Behr Number 2

Rookie - 0 Points (3/2/1951 / Netherlands)

Suicide Of My Father - Poem by Jerry Behr Number 2

I received a phone call during February 1988 twenty one years
ago. It was Hank a close family friend of the Behr family, he
asked me to come to the family home right away.
At that time my only transport was a bicycle so
I rode down, it only took half an hour it wasn’t far to go.

Upon arrival I met Hank and my mother Sophie in the kitchen.
Hank immediately said “ Sorry Jerry your dad did not make it”
and explained he had hanged himself in the garage. Police
and the contractors arrived later to ask
me to identify the body which for me was a hard task.

Hank tried to spare me the horror; however, the law said I had
to do it. I could see my father lying next to his metal work bench
table, there was a pool of blood next to his lifeless body. Hank
had cut him down there’s no way to be kinder.
As Dad came down he banged his head on the grinder.

I can still remember to this day the indentation of the rope
around his neck and his lifeless eyes were still half open. I
mumbled something which I have forgotten. This event was an
absolute shock there was only a very slight
hint of trouble when he lost his might.

It was before Christmas I visited mum and dad and while we
talked I sensed a pervading sense of sadness in his voice. When I
got home I said this to my wife Janet, about this pervading sense
of sadness, it was the only hint shown;
suicide is something before I’ve never known.

Later on I wondered what could drive my father to kill himself.
It might have been worries about Centrelink and the fact that he
did not declare his own pension on mum’s pension, for him it
was a worry. An unfortunate “life event” like a close
family friend dying in a car accident he didn’t want to lose.

He liked going on trips when he would be filled with excitement
but when the trip was over he would feel a bit depressed.
However, he would use work in order to pull himself up. In 1988
he couldn’t work anymore
now a full blown retiree he didn’t work furthermore.

I suppose depression set in because he could not be the man he
used to be and then my son Steven was badly burned and
scarred in an accident which would also have played on his
mind. Depression and not being able to work is an horrific
bind for a man and the forces are terrific.



Some twenty years had passed and now I’m 58 and lame with
a bum hip and on a pension. As I sit on my swivel architect chair
in front of my computer writing poetry and downloading it on to
Poem Hunter I realize
how lucky I am, at my age I can still work and scrutinize.

So for me there is never going to be retirement from poetry
writing and I’ll just go on and on and on as a poet downloading
poems on Poem Hunter I hope youse guys will enjoy my poetry
there’s never going to be an end to it.
I’ll just finish this line so it’ll just fit.©

17/11/2009


Comments about Suicide Of My Father by Jerry Behr Number 2

  • (5/7/2011 7:49:00 PM)


    that's real deep, sir../
    my grandfather died by heart attack when he was alone in his apartment
    I never met him though, thanks for the poem...
    (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, May 7, 2011

Poem Edited: Sunday, May 8, 2011


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