How Do We Forgive Our Fathers?

Dick Lourie

How do we forgive our fathers?
Maybe in a dream?
Do we forgive our fathers for leaving us too often
- or forever -
when we were little?
Maybe for scaring us with unexpected rage?
Or making us nervous because there never seemed to be
Any rage there at all?
Do we forgive our fathers
For marrying - or not marrying - our mothers?
Or divorcing - or not divorcing - our mothers?
And shall we forgive them for their excess of warmth - or coldness?
Shall we forgive them for pushing or leaning...
For shutting doors - for speaking through walls...
Or for never speaking at all... or never being silent?
Do we forgive our fathers in our age - or in theirs?
Or in their death, saying it to them - or not saying it?

If we forgive our fathers....
What is left..?