Friday Poem – Easy

Easy

 

He bleeds so easily now.

The smallest cut will seep

like the Cumberland River below

as dark bruising spreads beneath

his loosened skin.

The river is forty foot low this year

because the damn is cracked

and repairs are estimated to take five years.

The path down to the dock is steep

and rocky slate shifts beneath our feet

but he will fall

before he lets me hold his elbow.

There is a line between

dignity and helplessness –

his words “not helpless” –

as if any aid implies

complete loss.

But perhaps he knows something I don’t.

How slippery the slope

and this is how he avoids

a Humpty Dumpty tumble –

I wash away the blood, clean the cuts

before covering them

with antibiotic cream and bandage

which must be replaced again

and again like a finger in the dike.

I run his shirt under cold water

so the blood won’t stain

and it runs red down

the drain, which flows into the septic

I’ve been told might overflow,

so many liquids threatening

like the darkest rain clouds outside

and oh how I used to be afraid of

thunder and lightning.

If I could wash away one thing

I would erase all trace of worry

from his mind

so he would be at ease and know

the letting go is fine,

his daughter strong enough

to catch, to hold

to release when it is time.

 

– Debra Parmley

Published in Twilight Dips.

http://www.amazon.com/Twilight-Dips-Debra-Parmley/dp/1482556057

 

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