Costas Nisiotis


The Departure Poem by Costas Nisiotis


My father died on a wintry Sunday afternoon.
Moments before, his hair became black and curly
his eyes bright green. On his left wrist appeared
the watch with the gold bracelet.
He glanced at it and sprang out of bed.
A white shirt hung by the bedside.
He tucked it into black trousers.
Not the black suit again? I protested.
That’s the suit I got married in.
The room smells like a clinic.
Open the windows wide.
Give the wheelchair to an Old People’s Home.
-Are you sad you’re leaving? I asked him.
-The Equator divides my world into two equal parts:
the joy of seeing your mother and the sorrow of leaving you.
I’m about to cross it.
I knelt and hugged him.
Then my father left.

Submitted: Sunday, May 19, 2013
Edited: Wednesday, September 11, 2013

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