Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem that is a portrait of someone important to you. It doesn’t need to focus so much on what a person looks (or looked) like, as what they are or were.

i miss him in three places

his garage, empty,
the sound of crickets and locusts between us
him stepping out belly first
dancing his eyebrows at me
popping his teeth in and out of his gums
plaid shirt, denim and boots
arms wide, ready for me

his chair at the round table
surveying the people he’d made
six with fifteen more
his face lean and thrust forward to listen
he sat down when the table was set
he left when he was finished
he flirted with mema still
his eyes mischievous over his o of mouth

and on his horse
before me in the wood
bending under branches like he knew their names
talking my creature up a hill and down through a moving stream
galloping ahead of me across the field
where the pond was, before the highway came
saying the trees and telling me his memories
“this is what the lord has made
and it is good”

taught me