Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal

On My Father's Blindness

Tom Sheehan

Time whispered when he had eyes,
a deliberation of things,
    songs, stories, a string of beads
    some islander made in his equatorial days;
leaves, loaves, salad-making,
    great roasts’ sizzling songs,

    an unhurrying, yieldless time
    of games, ghosts, gobs of things.

How when sentences finally came to be
    he read Cappy Ricks and the Green Pea Pirates;
    his eye on the page, my ear on his tongue.
    Caesura was a bite of beer, a drink of cheese,
    turning words like the roasts he made,
    savory succulent tongue,
    but page wordless now.

    Now! Now!

Now Time strikes!
    Hurricanes, lightning, days are crunching,
    night is no more a pail of stars
    flung as sand on dark skies.
    The eyes are closed, the mouth;
    when do songs cease to sound?

Sprung from his loins wanting to be,
    self-torn from his arms
    at some piece of boyhood,
    I now remember earless, wordless,
    the touch when I was lovely young,

    and I know I roam forever
    in the darkness of his eyes.


Tom Sheehan has published 7 books in the last 6 years: mysteries, poetry, memoirs, short story collections. They include Epic Cures, short stories in 2005, from Press 53 in Winston-Salem, NC; A Collection of Friends, memoirs, in 2004, from Pocol Press in Clifton, VA; and This Rare Earth & Other Flights, poetry, in 2003. He has six Pushcart nominations, a Martha Albrend memoir nomination, a Silver Rose Award from ART for short story, and many Internet appearances.

© Tom Sheehan

Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal ISSN 1554-8449, Copyright © 2004-2012