After my mother died when my father came to live with my family - three sons, my husband - it suddenly became apparent how little we still had in common. I didn't behave very well. After he died I was desolate. And this is a poem written, I suppose, about a year after his death.
Your old hat hurts me, and those black
my palm from your soft heavy hand:
with sacks of potatoes from some local farm,
for your great heart broken and you gone.
you did not see their Spring.
as on that somewhere secretly appointed day
What happened, old bull, my loyal
blow that stopped you in your track
could not destroy your courage
uncowed and unconcerned with pleasing anyone.
I think of you now as once again safely
chosen as a bed, and feel most sorrow for
my childhood buried there
from Collected Poems and Translations (Carcanet Press, 2002), copyright ? Elaine Feinstein 2002, used by permission of the author and the publisher.