Photograph of My Father in His Twenty-Second Year

Photograph of My Father in His Twenty-Second Year
by Raymond Carver

Octo­ber. Here in this dank, unfa­mil­iar kitchen
I study my father’s embar­rassed young man’s face.
Sheep­ish grin, he holds in one hand a string
of spiny yel­low perch, in the other
a bot­tle of Carls­berg beer.

In jeans and flan­nel shirt, he leans
against the front fender of a 1934 Ford.
He would like to pose brave and hearty for his pos­ter­ity,
wear his old hat cocked over his ear.
All his life my father wanted to be bold.

But the eyes give him away, and the hands
that limply offer the string of dead perch
and the bot­tle of beer. Father, I love you,
yet how can I say thank you, I who can’t hold my liquor either
and don’t even know the places to fish.

(Photo is of my father in his twenty-fifth.)

Share

2 Comments to Photograph of My Father in His Twenty-Second Year

  1. Karen Wall's Gravatar Karen Wall
    June 19, 2011 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    Nice, Lisa.

  2. July 3, 2011 at 3:23 am | Permalink

    How beautiful

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Subscribe