I don’t know how to cry…

IMG_6114I was just a boy, eleven,

and in so many ways I lost

my innocence that day;

rising after eleven

on my summer vacation

to a house filled

with crying friends

and family hiding their

tears from the boy in

his terrycloth bathrobe;

greeted by my Mom

as all eyes were on us,

on stage, every chin tucked

against chest, every arm

folded, all quiet until

interrupted by the gasp

of a sob; two chairs were

where they never were so

all could see her say that

Daddy was gone, and

I cried because I thought

she was going to say it

was Nana, but it wasn’t

and I didn’t even cry

about the right thing

at first; there were no

more words that I recall

or want to, just dry toast

and weak tea as my first

meal of the rest of my life

without him and I hate

that menu still; it was so

long ago and just like it

happened today because

it did and I’ve never tried to

do anything but remember

this anniversary but

I still don’t know how

to cry about it; I don’t.


William Blyer Callahan (d. June 28, 1971)