Fathers, sons [poem]

"I missed him today,"
     she said
"I can't get him out
     of my head."
Perhaps he's missing; perhaps
     he's dead.
Yesterday I saw you sitting there
right there     
and now no matter quite how hard
I stare     
 I only see                              
an empty chair    
"I know what you mean"
     I sighed.
"My sons grew up, my father
She understood; I smiled;
    we cried.
Sometimes someone sits there in
your place     
They sympathise and somehow
fill the space     
I nod along and think about
your face     
I said: "We have to focus on
     the joys -
the love, their smell, the grace, their life
     their noise - 
our love-until-we're-bursting
     grown-up boys."
My father may have gone: my boys
are near     
and though they are and must not be
right here     
tomorrow night we'll meet
and have a beer     


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