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Here you will find the writings of the poet Theodore Waterfield

Reuben

You taught yourself,
father of paint, metal, gray eyes.
Father who saw the grain of poetry
in steel,
stood in oil,
endured the draft of factories.
And opened my eyes to pages,
to books with separate valleys,
to places that had no gravel,
no sound of horns,
clocks measuring the immeasurable.

Father of poverty,
who took the precious hours of his life
and gave them to me.
Who spoke of ghosts on the bay.
Ducks flying in from the frost.
Picking carcasses with his mother
for food,
reverent before their spoiled plumage,
giving them back the spirit of their wings.

Father, who cut ice when he was ten
on the tundra’s bay.
Father without a father,
who salted his food like his life,
with his heart’s blood.
Who came in from the cold
and drank dark tea,
then skated on the ice.

Father who taught me to fill
my silence with words,
my eyes with color,
and hold with compassion
the wounded bird,
the dying animal,
and say goodbye
to the tender innocence of their lives,
like his,
without meanness,
with charity,
with concern for the wounded world.

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