Shadows – for my father.
published in Acumen.
I went back to Africa, so sure I’d find you. But you were not there. On the boat – for a moment – was that you ? Smiling in to the sun ? The wind in your hair ? Oh, the shadows of the yachtsman you once were beyond the African soil you loved so much.
I drove through Africa and I looked at the dust to find your footprints where you once stepped. And there – for a moment – was that you ? In that sound ? Oh, my heart leapt at the shadows of the father you were. On the African soil you loved so much.
I did not find you. You were gone from that place. Barely the touch of your ghost in the lands. Or in the heat of the sun in the tropics. Or in the waving darkling hands.
I think you are where I last you. And I cried. Your shadow moves in that garden in Kent. Where you died.