Bacon on the Bookshelf

Savory picks for the free range reader

Him, Imagined


I spent last weekend in my hometown. On the plane and in bed I read “The Testaments” by Margaret Atwood, which I didn’t expect to love but did. Often I was with my father, still himself and also not himself, floating in time. 

Him (imagined):

I picked up the remote control to call my wife
(My wife, my life)
And saw that it was not the phone
I found the phone
I called my wife (my life)
To ask when she’d be home
And she said soon
A daughter sits here by my side
And I am not alone
I’m right as rain
No pain
Though sometimes things are where they’re supposed to be
And sometimes not.

I might lose track of time
But I have not lost track of me
And I am not alone.

(Sometimes I sense
On the slant
That something’s missing)


You are alone and I am alone;
You’re losing you –
and I’m losing he.
In a season of losses it’s losses I see.

The acorns rest on the sidewalk,

The leaves scatter and flee,

You are alone
And I am alone

In gentle – unsought – harmony.


*      *      *

”Listen to the song of life,” Katharine Hepburn encouraged. Thanks for reminding me, Don Winston.


*      *      *


  1. Thank you for inviting us into the quiet, aching moments you shared with your father. It makes all of us feel less alone.

  2. Beautifully expressed, made me smile through my tears this morning. Your father (and family) is fortunate to have you so present. You are not alone, but so know it can feel that way… sending you a long-distance hug.

  3. This is gorgeous, Jennifer!

  4. So lovely and sad. Sending hugs from DC.

  5. My heart aches with sadness and love for you. Beautiful poem, dear Jennifer.

  6. Jennifer, I appreciate the courage and vulnerability of your writing. You have touched my heart this morning.

  7. if there is any crueler grief than losing one abruptly it is losing one by degrees.

    perhaps revisit Emily Dickinson #561and #19.

    and wasn’t it Katharine, not Audrey? 😉 xooo…

  8. Your post was very gripping, heartfelt—meaningful. Thanks for sharing today.

  9. Absolutely beautiful—but the words are so sad and so very true.

  10. Very special, Jen! Heartfelt, too!
    Thank you, my dear!

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