Father’s Day

Dear Readers,

I have been very busy with weddings, a grandchild on the way and my leg in a soft cast because of a cranky Achilles.  Life is good!

In honor of “Father’s Day” I would like to share these poems from a father, Wade Greenlee.  We met virtually through a website for which I wrote an article.  His grief is very fresh: 

“We had that same knock on our door, Sept. 9th of last year (2013).  A Carson City deputy gave us a note to call a detective in Reno.  We asked if it was about our son, Brooks, and he said yes.  We originally thought that maybe he got into some trouble or something, but then the deputy said it was bad, and out it came… “Your son is deceased.”  Brooks was murdered by another man who was stalking a girl that Brooks was friends with, and had called him to help her.  Now, our normal life is gone…a new journey has begun…and we do not like it.  He is our only child and now we will never know the pride of seeing him graduate college, get married, have children, buy his first house…  We will wait patiently for those “gifts” but right now do not see anything that would give me that hope. Thank you for your story and your insight and I will try to trust that you are right.”

 Sleepness Nights 

 Sleepless nights…wakeful dreams

I see a man far in the distance

He beckons me forward

But I am stuck in time


It moves so slowly now

Trapping me in shadows

Whispering past memories

Like the wind through trees


A soft breeze so quiet

I yearn for its gentle caress

For just a moment…one moment

I wish so much to stay


But I am the man calling

For this journey must continue

The wind blows again

With memories to move me forward


 So Many Days Ago

 The days are piling up

Like oak leaves in the fall

So many days ago

Since I felt your touch


Your pictures beckon me

So I reach for you through them

Our grasp is so fleeting

Just a moment and its gone


I yearn for your presence again

But only feel whispery tendrils

Of your memory fading

And my strength ebbing away


New memories are forging

But they are weak and fragile

They stay for such a short time

For there is no love to hold them together


I yell out to the emptiness

Which will never again be filled

With the happiness of being

A father to a son

 — Wade Greenlee


I have also included one that my father, Gerd Stern, wrote when Christopher, was murdered 18 years ago.  Happy Father’s Day, Papa!

Checkin’ the Set*

there was nothing to forgive

then murder impossible to forget

drove your express spirit beyond

the no-ow-now presence gone

remembering your cramped tears

homesick ready for return

stone buddy cool dude games

Gofer Topher and Rasta Granpa twogether

inhaled our dug of choice

voicing synced to Stop The Violence

snorkeling o’er Poetreef coral heads

life quick if it’s not

where is it there you’re gone

to be scattered ashes

on Tamalpaian peak

highbeam grin turned to us

from twenty on years of photolit

token keepsake images portending

immediate fata finality

that shot to unexpected

to be so true

 (*Checkin’ out the set is watching the sunset)

 Happy Father’s Day to everyone.

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