Monthly Archives: June 2016

For Some of Us, It’s Fatherless Day

Father & daughter

For me,  a photo can be so much more enduring than words. And since I live and love by the written word,  images need to shout volumes to scorch my soul.

As someone who never knew my father, I have always had a painful relationship with Father’s Day. There’s nothing worse than seeing so many happy father people when I have absolutely nothing but regret, and fatherless loneliness to celebrate.

And yet I found the following presentments beyond words,  which stirred me in indescribable terms. The power of the images below filled me with heartache and okay, a lot of sadness. I hope they stir something in you too. And for all you fatherless friends out there, take comfort in knowing you’re not alone.

Fathers Day

Fathers Day B

Fathers Day C

Fathers Day G

Fathers day H

Fathers Day I

Fathers day J

Fathers Day K

Fathers Day M

Fathers Day N

Fathers Day O

Fathers Day L

Fathers Day P

Happy Father’s Day to My Constant Gardener

Man saving woman in garden

I am the gardener in our family. I love the process of transplanting, weeding, giving life to seedlings, watering, and pruning long after my masterpieces have faded.

Rejuvenating my dormant plants and encouraging new growth and flowering, is more creative and peaceful than anything I know.

As a gardener, I know that the best starting point for any living thing is to remove dead, diseased, or damaged stems as soon as I see them. Because any gardener knows that dead stems attract insects and invite diseases to develop.

And I have gardened enough over the years to know that relocating a plant hidden and strangled by weeds allows it to bloom and shine and flourish once again. But once that plant has been moved to a new location, it needs constant care, and lots of water, but ever so carefully, so as not to drown it.

Repair and renew.

As I tend and toil in my garden, my husband basks in the sun. When it comes to our yard, I am the queen of green.

But in our relationship, my husband is the gardener.

He is the caretaker, the stable one who waters and nourishes. And I am the thankful recipient of his protection, soaking up his love and attention.

While I shine, he tends. When I’m sad or weary, he encourages. When I’m down, he pulls me up.

I am his garden favorite so to speak.

Our unlikely paths crossed randomly, during a rainy period, before the leaves covered everything and the ground froze solid enough to break our spades.

I was the fiercely independent and untrusting woman. He was the problem solver, with a gentle and steady demeanor.

I was the perennial in desperate need of a transplant. He was the constant and consummate gardener.

His protective method of pruning and cultivating was vital to ensuring my productivity, my longevity, and my strength. And his special care and attention over the years reinforced my optimal growth.

He’s charming and witty, but in a quiet, subtle way. He wears with pride the same t-shirts and socks he’s had for 20 or more years. I used to be embarrassed by the holes in his socks and the greyish aura of his used-to-be-white shirts, but I understand now.

It took me years to realize that he can’t throw them away because he’s loyal. The most loyal man I have ever met.

And he is selfless. Caring nothing for himself.

He’s disciplined in a way I could never be. A pillar of strength and support and as solid as a mighty oak tree.

He refuses to acknowledge his birthday and makes me promise to say and do nothing for him on the day that should be a celebration of his life.

And he doesn’t want any accolades on Father’s Day, so as not to put any pressure on anyone to recognize or do anything special for him at all.

That kind of stuff breaks my heart because he’s a terrific father, husband, and grandfather, and deserves to be honored and recognized for all the wonderful things he is and does for his family.

And he repeatedly reminds me that he is not my father, so I should stop with all the Father’s Day hoopla.

No, he isn’t my father. But I can’t help thinking how blessed my life would have been if I had a father who was a fraction of the man my husband is.

I thought I needed a broken man who could relate to my broken parts.

But in the end, I found a most amazing and truly whole man who painstakingly repaired and renewed me.

I always thought I was the constant gardener, the caretaker, and the provider who could handle anything.

But I was wrong.

I was wrong about a lot of things.

But I was right about him.

Happy Father’s Day my love.

Bless Me Father


Your mother
is a sinner.

And so are you.

Go now
and confess.

The girl
was terrified.

Not sure what
to say.

She just had
First Communion.

But never confessed
any sins.

The confessional
was dark.

And she hated

The dark
was always

The priest
was barely

Bless me father
for I have sinned.

How long since your
last confession
he asked.


What have you
to confess
my child?


Lord please have
on my soul.

The priest

And opened
the curtain
to reveal

She knew him and
he knew her.

He sat the girl
in a pew
and held her hand.

It was still wet
from blessing herself
with the holy water.

Why would you
confess such a thing
my little one?

Because Mother Superior
ordered me
beg for
and repent.

He took her hand
and they walked
to the school.

In silence.

She was in trouble.

Maybe she was supposed
to genuflect when
she came into
the church.

Who would ask a child
to confess such a thing
asked the priest of
the nun.

Her mother is

She pointed at the girl.

And she doesn’t belong here.

Perhaps it is you
who doesn’t belong
here, he fumed.

The mother arrived

Dressed in a yellow
mini dress
and fake pearls.

Her hair in a bee hive
her cheeks a rosy pink.

Her heels high
and her scent lovely.

The nun was dismissive
and merciless.

But the mother
was fierce.


And ready to


This is what you call
my daughter?

You are a sinner,
and so is she
the nun spat out.

The priest gasped.

The mother moved in
for the kill.

And cut the nun to size
with her biting

No mercy.

The nun was quiet
humbled and ashamed.

The mother was triumphant.


The priest was pleased.

He did his best to
hide his smile.

The child trudged back to class
knowing the
would be merciless.

Bless me father