So young are the memories that fill the well of sorrows I drink from. Those days when far too much shared space in my life with my dedication to fatherhood. Now, this, the end of those moments of self-importance. This. The years, the tears, days of anguish and rage fueled nights tormented by confusion. This, my beloved daughter is my only solace. The one gift I can offer without limit or supervision. This, my words of love that make this what it is. Words that flow from my heart and suckle in my soul, yet only seem to reflect my brokenness. This, the one freedom not taken. This, the liberty to cry the anguish of my soul to the world I left you in, alone. This. Unmatched sadness. This. Hurt too terrible to believe exists. This, the shadow of tears that can’t flow anymore.
So fresh in my mind are the smiles you showered upon me all those years ago. So tender were the melodies of your voice calling, “daddy”. Now this, my child, my beloved. Too young were you to be subjected to what I never should have had to prepare you for. So much for one too young. Now, this, the cold time my child. The unforgiving cold of silence which has been the constant of my days since then. And this. This remains my only source, my salve, my redemption. The one freedom untouched, unsoiled, unbending. This, the freedom to express my love, the expanse of my pride, and the depth of the promise I know your life’s walk holds. This is today my freedom. This then is the strand strung invincible that connects our solidarity, that which retains those thens we had not enough of. Days that rejoiced while angels sang for the love between a dad and his daughter. Those are the yesterdays that haunt my dreams and color my nightmares. This, the all that fills my cup and casts my dreams asunder. This, my beautiful child blisters my soul in the cold sunset of another decade away from you.
Then grace. This becomes the sunrise of what maybe, can be, must be; what slices clean the dense layers of deprivation that sadness demands. This. The dark guest who comes at will and stays too long. This, the hope that emancipates sorrows unimaginable and cleanses the dark skin of prison. This dark, thick skin of past sins. This, my precious and beloved daughter, this is my love for you married to my sorrow that gives birth to my freedom; this freedom, this attempt at it all. This. I love you. Dad.