The last time my father returned from work

there was just enough daylight left for me

to watch his shadow follow on the street.

I was coming home from the beach to meet

him as usual and I can still see

the way he stopped for breath under an arc

of maple limbs, the way he looked around

without noticing I was there behind

him on the rise. Sand rode a sea breeze thick

with the familiar scent of brine and fish.

Soon he would move again. He would climb

the stairs, laughing gulls would still be the sound

of summer sun, I would still be fourteen

and have no reason to recall that scene.




Floyd Skloot’s most recent book is the poetry collection Approaching Winter, published by Louisiana State University Press in 2015. His novel The Phantom of Thomas Hardy will be published in October 2016 by the University of Wisconsin Press.

Issue #60 July 2016
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