I don’t remember us meeting;
I guess I always knew you.
I don’t remember ever having an easy conversation with you –
I guess I never got to know you.
You scared me –
You scared me the way a mountain scares someone who wishes they could climb one but never will.
You were larger than life,
And I didn’t know how to bring you into mine.
I shook your hand, though.
You wrote so many stories down,
But I wish I’d asked you to tell me just one.
When people hear my grandpa was a writer,
They smile and say, “That’s where you get it!”
Is that true, Daudy?
Did you send a trickle of ink in the flow of crimson you passed to me?
Does talent fit into a Punnett square?
Were you even talented, or just determined?
Is it in my genes or is it the only thing I know how to do?
Is it in my genes or is it the only way I can search for what’s missing?
Something the others seem to have already found
Something I can’t quite put my finger on
Something I can see as Black or White as you saw things
Your absence has been a presence in my life for my whole life.
I wish I’d written to you then,
When you could’ve written back.
I wonder if you’ll read what I have to say.
Mine and your heavens seem like they’ll have books in them –
Maybe somehow, up there, you can read what I’ll write before I’ve written it.
Maybe we can read each other,
And talk about it,
Not just shake each other’s hands.