My Apologies to the Men I Knew: A Poem

Shane Kell. Pexels.com.

My Apologies to the Men I Knew

My apologies to the
men I knew.
Uncles, cousins, and Glenn
filled in the
winding blank
spaces of my childhood.
To me they were all
adults who had it figured out —
bristled and brutish and butch.

I didn’t know they were trying to
trace over what my
father left when he
left, with his
deft penchant for flight.
They must have been drowning,
drowning in their own
world toils, still they
lightly pencil-shaded over the
fading outline of
his ghost.

Now my son
sees me, and so
sees them, and
maybe him too, though I
hope not him, so my
son won’t know what
not to do.

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