And then pa?

I stand watching you

While you fight for your life

Your breathing slow, each breath slower than the last

I hear the machines beeping, an urgency

And then there is silence, they beep no more

I see you sleeping

Like you’ve dozed off

like you used to, before,

when we were young

while telling a story

and we’d say, “And then pa?”

Then you’d wake up

and continue from where you’d stopped.

I’d seen the children do it too-

nudging you, wanting more, wishing the story never ended

they’d say, “And then Nana*?

and you’d stir

and carry on where you’d left; It made me smile

for the things that never change.

I touch you gently now; there is a quiet on your face

I whisper hopeful, greedy for more,

And then pa?”

But you ‘re in deep slumber, I see a peace on your face.

Dad and the girls taken in 2009

*Nana – grandpa All Rights Reserve

5 responses to “And then pa?”

  1. sienablue Avatar

    It is so hard to be present at a loved one’s death. I saw the moment of transformation for my mom. We were praying out loud with two of her caregivers, the Rosary. I saw her pulse slow down….i was holding her hand. I looked back at my only brother….he came forward to hold her other hand. Her eyes opened…she looked at me then looked over my shoulder with an expression of wonder. Her face transformed and she was gone. Right at the last words of the prayer.
    I know we did all that mattered to give her a good passing. Your father was blessed to have you with him at the end.


  2. Infinite Living Avatar

    I am glad you are writing this beautiful poetry 💛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smitha V Avatar

      Thank you so much Pragalbha. It helps me get it all out.🧡

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Gopalasamudram Subramanian Avatar
    Gopalasamudram Subramanian

    I went through your last few posts and can understand the deep anguish that engulfs you now. But you are blessed because you have the power of the written word through which you can pour it out. I am sure that this will help heal the wounds, though the scars will be there. The loss of a parent is a traumatic episode in one’s life and it is bound to change your approach to life, call it an awakening. I can only echo the words of Saul Bellow, which you had reproduced in an earlier post, I think it is ‘I am confused’. Though the physical presence of your father is no longer there, he will ever be present in the subtle form to look over you and your family as a guardian angel. I am sure your creativity will start exploring new canvasses and that will make you aware of your inner strength which had so far been nurtured by your father. So let your grief take its own course and flow out, that will lift the burden you carry in your heart. In conclusion, I can only quote Robert Frost ‘In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on’.
    Incidentally, my earlier comments do not appear here and hence I have reposted.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Gopalasamudram Subramanian Avatar
    Gopalasamudram Subramanian

    I have gone through your last few posts and understand your grief. But you are blessed that you have the power of the written word, which will help your wounds to heal, but yes of course the scars will stay to help you remember and cherish the memories of the love that was there and will continue as your friend to help you through troubled times. I am sure your father is listening to your outpourings and will always be there as your guardian angel.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply. I love comments.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: