Start with the thin wisp
of hope some stranger hocked
in a hospital room while you waited—
heart pressed to chest—for your father
to die. Breathe in. Decades have skipped
to this beat with someone else dipping hope’s
thread into the tiny creek at your wrist,
your fear swimming upstream to the damaged
cavern you inherited. Breathe out. Papa, I hear
your rhythm, the hum of deceptive rest,
the steady syllables of persistence.
What will hope find with its tiny eye,
with its very large memory of death?