"But first, baby, as you climb and count the stairs (and they total the same), did you, sometime or somewhere, have a different idea?
Is this, baby, what you were born to feel, and do, and be?"

-Kenneth Fearing

Thursday, August 19, 2010



You remembered cigarettes

after the names for things were gone,

you still had the two fingered gesture,

although you couldn’t light it or lift it to your mouth.

The hospital let it go, in certain cases.

You clung like an injured mountain climber

gripping a ledge halfway down the face,

too weak to scale your way back up,

and nothing to ease you down.

No help coming,

couldn’t reach you if it was,

although everyone said

“Expect miracles.”

and they paraphrased

that bible verse about

the faith of a mustard seed

moving mountains.

And I thought, move it all you like,

it’s still the same mountain.

But looking at you,

a painted skeleton, minus teeth

I did expect a miracle.

I asked whatever it is that listens

to prayers and pleadings

that you would notice your fingers

still clutching the shelf out of habit,

and tell them this once to let go.

                                         -Brent Allard


  1. Very Nice Brent- Heartfelt. I love the reminiscing tone, and the timelessness that really doesn't reveal how old these thoughts are...I have had these thoughts about a loved one and appreciate the write.--J

  2. Thanks. To me, it portrays a scene to be relived again and again and is really immune to time.

  3. Your poem touched me, Brent, and brought back memories of my father's battle with cancer. Thank you for sharing such personal work.

  4. Thanks K.M., I'm glad it connected with you.