Requiem for my Father

“Our hearts are restless, until they can find rest in you.” – St. Augustine

I buried my father yesterday. Now I am an orphan.

I remember when he took a bus up to Minneapolis to bring my young son and me back down to Huntsville following my divorce. He stepped up to the plate for his youngest grandchild, teaching him about gardening, raising ducks, how to shoot a .22 rifle and to make a tasty squirrel stew.

He lent me the money to start my own publishing company. I didn’t ask him – he volunteered. He said he considered it a business venture.

My father showed me what a Christian marriage really was. He and my mother were married over 60 years when she passed away. As the Parkinson’s disease slowly took her mind and her body, he lovingly cared for her, staying positive and strong for her all the way through. I never found a love like that. But I gave him a beautiful grandson, so there’s one thing I got right.

After my father’s funeral, my sister gave me a copy of Fiend Angelical she found among some of his papers. I don’t know if he ever read it, had started to read it or intended to. I had no idea he had it in his possession. I don’t know what that meant.

I don’t think my father ever really understood me. But he didn’t have to. He loved me anyway.

Requiescat in pace, Papa. May your memory be eternal.

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