My recent infatuation with haiku master Issa, has led me to his poems about his family. Sad story. His mother died very early. His father remarried, but the new wife was not a warm, nurturing stepmom.
So, Issa leaves home early to wander and find his fortune.
Later, as his father was dying of typhus, Issa returns home to care for his father in his dying days. His verse about his father’s last days is a heartbreaker.
Last time, I think
I’ll brush the flies
from my father’s face.
I was reminded of my last contact with my father. This is a different time and a different age. Instead of being in the same room brushing away flies, I was 2,000 miles away. I attempted to reach my father by telephone.
Last call to my dad.
Nurses wheeled him to the phone.
Couldn’t hear a thing.