Monday 27 February 2012

My Dad (31-10-1928 to 26-02-2012)

Isaac Benjamin Heinemann ca 1960 in baseball uniform
The  Midland Braves, Rhodesia (Zimbabwe)
Hero Worship (Stroke #11)     

How hard it is to remember what was
When I a small child and you a grown-up hero:
Daily reality has me grasping at straws
Of old images I stoop and pick up.

The cheering of a scattered crowd
Rising to their feet at the hard-hitting sound:
You struck the ball right to the moon
With bases loaded and two runs to win.

There you were, on the next day, boldly splashed
Across the front page of the Bulawayo Chronicle:
High above the ground, flying into home base,
White uniform unsoiled and a pompadour of debonair dark hair.

Somewhere in the years gone past
I’ve lost both you and that crackling paper icon:
All I have left is a sad Doppelgรคnger,
A grey-haired child who reminds me of you.

My Dad & I.
Will I Remember? (Stroke #20)       

Will I remember, when you have gone,
Entirely gone away,
The shape of your hands
With their strong blunt fingers?
Your gold wedding band scratched and worn
On the same hand that has a shortened forefinger,
The tip sliced off when, long before I was born,
You swerved to avoid  — A cow? A child? —
And your motorbike went one way and you another.
The colour of your eyes is already faded,
Except when you wear
Your favourite blue-checked shirt from Woolworths:
Then they are the movie-star eyes of my youth.
I’m used to your thin grey hair,
Instead of your shiny black kuif,
And your nose — Ouma’s nose! My nose! —
Has never changed.
You’ve shrunk.
Now I must bend down to kiss you,
Where once you threw me high in the air,
And I knew you were a god come down to earth,
More handsome than any father has a right to be.
When I weep for all I have lost already:
Your sage advice, your mischief,
The safety of your strength,
I ask myself:
When you have gone, entirely gone away
Into the silence of the great beyond,
Will I remember even this?
Kuif  = Greased back fringe; an Elvis Presley pompadour hairstyle
Ouma  = Grandmother

Finis (Stroke #25)

Cold numbers that mean the end.
How peaceful you look there,
At rest in the light of the full moon.
Safe and free and calm.
Your face once again the face of Love.

My beloved father died yesterday at 13h35
after a long illness, bravely borne. 
Kind, strong and; loving, he was a gentle giant of a man. 
We love you, Dad, and thank you for the gift of your life.

Please note: as part of mourning my Dad,  
I will be off all social media sites until April 2012. 
Any social media commitments made prior 
to my Dad's passing will be met.
If you wish to contact me urgently, 
please  email me via the "contact me" page.


Tabouleh said...

oh Judy, I am so sorry to read of your father's passing to another realm. He is still watching over you of course but to know that he is not physically close to you hurts. I had tears in my eyes reading your poems as I was thinking of my own father too and how difficult and hurtful it would be when he decides to join another world. It is hard on the loved ones left behind... I am thinking of you and your family and you are in my thoughts. God grant you the strength to carry this void in your life.

Damaria Senne said...

Judy, I am so sorry to hear of your father's passing. The poems above are a neautiful tribute to him. My condolences to your family. Damaria

The Incidental Tourist said...

Judy, so sad, so poignant, so beautiful, so heartfelt and so very true. Thank you for sharing. Love you all x.

Frances Garrood said...

I'm so very sorry to hear of your beloved father's death, Judy. Have a cyber hug x

Judith Mercado said...

My heart goes out to you, Judy. May you find solace, peace, and comfort in the coming days.

Ann Summerville said...

Judy, I am so sorry, I shed a few tears for you this morning. You have captured so much in the poems.

Yvonne Osborne said...

These are beautiful poems, Judy. What a handsome, wonderful man. He must have been very deserving of such a tribute. I'm sorry for your loss.

Birdie said...

What are to say when there are no words that go far enough to express our sympathy? Losing a parent is wickedly difficult. All we remember is when they were young and bigger than life.

Love to you my friend. I am so sorry. xo

Bish Denham said...

Oh Judy...My heart goes out to you. Your tribute to the man of your life, precious and dear. You are blessed to have had him in your life, to know that he runs in your blood, in the cells of your being, making you who you are.


Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

Thank you all so much for the kind thoughts and care. I'm overwhelmed at the moment, but will answer individually as soon as I can. (((HUGS))

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Dearest Judy .. I am so sorry for you and the family, particularly your mother - I love your memories here .. and I know you'll have many more to share with us and through your stories ..

Take time, take time with your mother, and I'm so pleased you all had some time together before the 26th came around ..

With big hugs and love - your Dad has been so influential in your life .. blessings to you all - Hilary

J.B. Chicoine said...

I know you and your family have had a time of it since his last sorry to hear of your loss...but so glad you've had so many wonderful memories with him...

Lauri said...

Such lovely, lovely poems. What more can we ask form this life except that someone truly loved us. Robala ka kagiso, RragoJudy.

Linda Cassidy Lewis said...

Such a beautiful tribute to your father. Love never dies. May you be blessed.

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

Thanks again - I've printed out all the comments for my Mom & sister to read, and they also found great comfort in them. I'm starting to work on the back log so hoepfully you'll all soon be receiving a personal thank you from me, rather than this generic (but sincere!) thank you. :)

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

Dear Linda, Lauri & JB - thank you for your kind messages! I'll write to each of you via Facebook's direct message facility.

Once again, thank you all for your kind thoughts and messages - they have all helped a lot!


septembermom said...

I am so sorry Judy. Sending love to you.

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

Thanks, Kelly, :(

A Cuban In London said...

My thoughts are with you and your family. I only found out now. And yet, from adversity you were able to carve such fine poems. You're a great writer. I'm so sorry about your loss.

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

Thanks, Cuban. While one rationally understands that death is part of a natural life cycle, it's still surprisingly hard to come to terms with the loss when those we love die.

Kiru Taye said...

Hi Judy,

You've written a wonderful tribute to your father. I pray he is smiling down on you and your family with love and resting peacefully.

Lots of love,

Lisa said...

My thoughts are with you dearest Judy. What you wrote was truly beautiful and I can't get over the wonderfulness of the pictures of your Dad and your Dad and you. You must be missing him dearly now.

Judy Croome | @judy_croome said...

KIRU: I do feel my Dad's smile shining down on us - he was, in many ways, too gentle a soul for this world and it's some comfort to know that he's in a far more peaceful place than this earth.

OCEANGIRL: We are missing him so much. My Mom is struggling badly - as you've had the same sad experience of losing your husband, I'm sure you can understand her sense of loss of they'd spent nearly 60 years together! :(