Three decades have passed
since we eulogized my father
in the First Congregational Church.
The largest test of manhood I ever took
was to gracefully appreciate
all the good things others related to me
while I was silently relieved
he was gone from human form
and unmet father-son relations.
I grew up alright without ever
going hunting, fishing
or to a ball game with my father.
It was a less muscular manhood
I learned reading books
and bicycling long distances.
His version of Cowboy-up was not going to the ER
the day basketball mangled my right ankle.
We waited two days for a regular doctor appointment
as the breaks and ligament tears
painfully protested the lack of attention
by turning colors and swelling to great size.
I guess that did obliquely prepare me
for the rigors of adulthood
since hope and success are both painful.
I learned on my own to be the author
of definitions of the terms
and to judge my effort’s results.
copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney