If we knew how it ended

If we knew how it ended, where, when, we’d not send days up in balloons to drift against the blue. The roads, unsigned, trail away and end somewhere at foggy farm fences, dull cul de sacs, fallen trees, become impassable through rain or might even seem to run straight through wheat ablaze with sun; either one is an end and then what? You’re only young and cannot say and me, I’m so much older and cannot say. This day sits like light on water hoping, the great blue looks on mouth open with the wonder of what we might do. I fathered you, listened to the strange sounds you made alive but two days, built a fire for you and warmed you with the flames. You might reach me through the darkness if you knew and I would call your name more shrilly in the dead night if I could count the grains within the hour glass and know which would be the last to pass. My hands open and close hoping for things to hold: a picture of you, a thought you wrapped in words and left absent-mindedly somewhere, some small thing that retains your warmth still. My own father’s grown less substantial and his voice falters down the line and we could never unwind the tangles, nor mend the torn fibres in the rope between us; at least, we can face each other, camouflage the distance with a joke or a beer or a meal. But your distance and mine knows nothing but itself, blind in the darkness, unaware what cliff edge sits smugly waiting for a misstep.


4 thoughts on “If we knew how it ended

  1. This is stunning.
    That first line, and:
    “This day sits like light on water hoping”
    “My hands open and close hoping for things to hold”

    I feel this, as both a parent, and a daughter.

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