Thursday, April 07, 2011

The Father

thing number two wants lasagna
thing number one wants pizza
i feel like thing number zero

i'm hungry too, but i feed
the boys first, and feel guilty
that i called them things

i didn't say it out loud, but
it's at that point i realize
i've misplaced my patience

milk in the cupboard
cereal in the refrigerator
it must be around here somewhere

maybe i can cook some up
find it again in the zen
of mise en place

the feel of the blade
cutting the carrots into brunoise
the blade dulling by molecules

the tiny chimes the carrots
make as they fall
into the stainless steel bowl

i'm putting the third bite of my
dinner into my mouth when
thing number two asks for dessert

* * * * *

This poem was written in response to a prompt at Poetic Asides to write a poem about a type of person.


  1. LOL, I love this. I have 3 sons and the first born was 3 1/2 when I brought the 3rd home from the hospital. They're all grown men now, but I remember the days of milk in the cupboard and cereal in the fridge! Great write!

  2. Children will try even the most patient person, well said, Mr. Walker.


  3. I used to be a little 'thing' - probably a bigger 'thing' now... such is life...

  4. I like the images you paint here!

  5. Gloria, thank you. I complain about them, but I love them dearly.
    Pamela, thanks. I've learned a great deal of patience as a father - and I'm still learning.
    Stan, I'm definitely a bigger thing myself.
    SweetTalkingGuy, thanks for the kind words.

  6. You captured the feelings of being a parent and setting your wants aside. Oh, and the guilt, we always find a little guilt when we loose our patience. Good response to the prompt.

  7. That was really good! I don't have kids, but that sounds about right.

    Mad Kane

  8. Anonymous1:35 AM

    I was a kid once. Really. I know; go figure, eh? I had a father, sorta. He never cooked anything though. Well, the occasional hot dog pennies deep fried in Crisco, but I'm not sure that counts. Anyway, he's dead now and I'm not. Really. I know, go figure, eh?

    Oh yeah; nice poem.

  9. Judy, thank you. I was trying to capture the reality of being a parent and being a child. It's hard at the end of the day, when you're tired from working all day, and you're hungry on top of that. I don't like it when my patience is short, and I wanted to be honest about that too.
    Mad Kane, thanks, as always, for stopping by and commenting.
    Ron, glad you liked it. Hope it didn't stir up any painful memories.

  10. I love how you touch on the essence of parenting during trying times (like when you want to be the kid)... we all have times like these.


  11. Laurie, thank you for your kind comments. That was exactly what I was trying to capture - "parenting during trying times".

  12. Anonymous7:58 PM

    Congratulations, Richard, on making #17 on the Top 50 for Poetic Asides April PAD Challenge. Absolutely well-deserved, my friend!! :)


  13. Paula, thanks so much for the info on this. I've been away for the long holiday weekend. We have a family friend whose birthday is July 3rd; we just got back home late last night, Tuesday the 5th. I also got your email; thanks again. I have a lot of catching up to do.