I once had a father, but in his surname only,
He had a daughter, whom he truly despised.
He chastised my eleven-year old exam failure,
With his angry words he ostracized my world.
Thereafter I lived in fear of daily admonishments,
Not always spoken, but glanced in resentment.
I can still feel that hatred for me, at low times,
Eyes pierced my presence in a loathsome way.
He destroyed my childhood with his cold manner,
Not one single photographic memory together.
Holidays and hobbies were for everyone else,
Not a single day spent in a happy family grouping.
I can still see your fingers tapping a cigarette box,
You were a master of armchair politics and rights.
Strangers knew a different you, with your kindness,
It hurt all the more to know you mellowed outside.
Without your earthly being, I have now flourished,
Restoration of self-belief enabled self- fulfilment.
There is sadness and a vacuum in being unloved,
But a daughter’s courage writes these words today.
©Copyright Eileen T O’Neill 17/06/2015
Poets United Mid-Week Motif: Fathers….