My Father And I

as i may have shared here previously / my father married 3 times / i have as well / there are things that i recall about him that i see in myself strongly / and ways that we differ / there are things that i can’t reconcile about him still / where am i going with this?

my dad’s wives all worshiped him / it is not too strong to state it in that way / i clearly recall my mother / his first wife / lingering on every word he would toss to her / she was disabled shortly after my birth and my father had his needs / they were divorced but she never stopped loving him / if an adolescent boy could read this it must have been painfully obvious / not a nice man perhaps / what would i have done in his place?

his second wife was his lover during the time he was married to my mother / even i knew / she was a kind and generous woman in every way to me though / but what in the world did my father have to offer? / what was it that made him so powerful in the eyes of women? / he was not what i would think of as dashing or handsome / and certainly not wealthy / he was capable of great insensitivity / self centered to a fault / always a schemer / often a blowhard /

he lost his second wife to cancer / it was the only time i ever saw him break down /

the tale of his third wife leaves me shaking my head / when he was still married to my mother / he met and became involved with and made pregnant a woman that would later become his third wife / he abandoned her when he met his second wife and returned to her after she died / she remained faithfully waiting for him during the decades that ensued /

by the time my father married his third wife / he was in failing health / she dedicated herself to his care / some few years later my dad died leaving her thousands of dollars in debt / she had been told investments and the insurance money would take care of everything / there was none /

i am haunted by unanswered questions about this man / what was it that these women saw in him? / why did they devote themselves so completely to him? / how could they have been so blind to his true nature? / he was not a prince of a man /

and i look into my young wife’s china blue eyes / and i can not fathom what it is that makes her worship me as she does / i am not my father i know / but in the cold morning light / it is his face i see in the mirror / his grey encroaching shadow i feel /

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