My Father’s blue is a warm blue country sky
over a deserted, unpaved road,
with a car pulling a camper,
us kids in the back complaining,
“No visiting, Dad!”
Until we meet the smiling faces of distant relatives
or friends from the past
and see the happiness that
(Thank you, Dad, for your constant caring for others.)
My father’s blue is gray-blue eyes
looking at me with warmth and love.
A quiet man amidst my noisy uncles,
his gentle ways
and his strength of character and resolve
made us love him more.
We never had to guess
about his love for us.
He wanted our happiness most.
(Thank you, Dad, for loving us so well.)
My father’s blue is blue ink on callused hands.
He returned to school when we were young
earlier giving up a job as chemist
in an oil company
to study theology.
Late nights the light would be on
in his study
to his ceaseless working-
his studies, sermons and Christmas newsletters.
(Thank you, Dad, for your love of learning and your faith.)
My father’s blue is a pair of dusty blue jeans
worn in the garden.
Born on his family’s farm,
we grew up with his abundant gardens
in every town we lived.
Plates were scraped to compost,
strange practice to our friends.
The land was lovingly cared for,
And the neighbours all well fed.
(Thank you, Dad for your love and respect for the Earth.)
waves lapping gently against the stones on the beach,
smoothing sharp edges and blending.
In the end, none are so different.
All my life, I remember my father’s acceptance of others-
the poor girl in my class
who ate breakfast with us,
the stranger at the door
turned away by a visiting relative
and called back by my father-
invited in without gloating or smugness
No one ever knew.
(Thank you, Dad, for wanting to make the world a better place.)