A Collection of Frost

A Collection of Frost
by David LaBounty

you decide to leave it all,
mostly because the bad
outweighs the good and so

your sons watch you drive
away though you will return
the next day and the day

after that but that doesn’t matter

that doesn’t matter and you
don’t seem to mind leaving
this image, you

with your suitcase and a handful
of books, as if to say
the books mean more than love

though it is hard to explain
that love is air and books
are water and so you drive

away you don’t seem to mind
the hole you’ve left behind,
a hole too big for a needle

and thread yet a hole
not the size of a grave
the days turn to months

and the hole remains
like the scab on a wound
you do your best to fill

the hole, you fill it with gestures
promises of a utopian someday,
gestures like a quick messing

of your sons’ still soft
and placid hair it’s all we know

how to do

this is how we do it

this is how we leave our mark

this is how the past is set on the mantle

this is how we leave the past all but frozen shut

Comment: Sadly, this is a true poem. My wife and I are divorcing after 13 years of marriage and we have two young boys. At the time of our separation I never really took the time to consider the point of view of our sons, what it must have felt like to watch their dad leave. It was a year ago, I’ve thought about it a lot since, about the nature of jarring memories and how they stay sealed inside forever.

6 thoughts on “A Collection of Frost

  1. Wow. Great poem. Very moving. Divorce is hard on everyone. But if you had the empathy to write this poem, I have a feeling your boys are going to be just fine. ” love is air and books
    are water” Fabulous line.

  2. poem is spot on. remembering my own parents divorce, seeing my dad in a new life was pretty easy to adapt to, that he never communicated and gradually divorced us all, and so did his half of the family, is something that hurts still. i was 8 then. i am 53 now, and my dad still doesnt have time. communication is number one, and never leave them emotionally behind you.

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