With My Father

In dedication….


My father

had no choice,

but to paint,

nature and nurture,

each in full measure,

assuring his fate.

A memory of us:

he lifted me

close to the heavens,

and perched there on his shoulder,

maybe three,

maybe four,

I used words to describe

the clouds

that seemed to be

within fingers’ reach.

My father smiled,

in recognition,

in loving wonder.

For the desire to still the world,

in paint

or words,

long enough to capture

the momentary magnificence

of a scene,

was ours to share,

in paint,

and in words.

Close to the heavens,

with my father.


Painting: Paul D. Ortlip

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