1The first time I appreciated
3and how -- to the chagrin
4of the righteous brother who'd stayed
5at home minding his manners
6along with the company store --
7the father laid on dinner
8with cakes and wine galore
9when the selfish oaf went broke
10and came running home for a blessing,
11instead of giving him a dressing-
12down, and a swift kick,
13was when, a father myself,
14I tried my hand at baking
15angels: thin, delicate
16miracles -- performed without breaking
17a single wing! Forty-six,
18and then the last two fell
19and shattered. It felt like hell.
20In spite of the forty-six,
21those two fell through my head
22for half an afternoon.
23And I thought: if all this over shortbread,
24imagine over my son.


2] Luke 15: 11-32. Back to Line
Publication Notes: 
Morning Watch (Montreal: Véhicule Press, 1995): 50.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire