Poetry from Michael Agee

Losing The Fathers

Losing the fathers is like falling up when you stumble, So unexpected! The fathers are of the twin bedrock with the Mothers. They are the tree roots in Her fertile soil of the soul. The fathers come in all sorts of guises. Some saint, others fool. Some stern and proud, others warm and fuzzy like a big happy dog. Some fathers are accidental, others carry each plan to its preordained conclusion.

Fathers sometimes fall up too. Sometimes they stumble and hurt us. Sometimes they fail to hold the inherited pain within and act it out upon our bodies and spirits. As do the Mothers. The father chain goes all the way to the beginning, an unbroken series of links. Unbroken. Some of these links were forged in fire and pain, a species agony. Others were crafted like magical rings, each creating hammer stroke a whisper of love and power and bright knowledge. Most fathers are lost to us, as are the Mothers. They are ancestors now Who hold the liminal gateway in Their mighty hearts and wait to welcome us home. Other fathers come to us late in life and are not of our bodies. They are spirit fathers who heed the call of the Child and answer with support and tenderness. These fathers added nothing to our flesh-of-creation yet have made our lives richer for their strength and generosity. These fathers have found within themselves the storehouse of true gold that knows we all need fathers who Love, and are Strong, and who Give With Both Hands when the need is true.

Some fathers are a (                                    ), a missing or abandoned place and leave a hole in our hearts forever. Or at least until we re-learn that the true father resides within always. Some fathers must be given the capital F. They are Fathers who reside in all things, are in all places, all-generative, all-potent, filled with the rays of the sun. These Fathers we pray to or call upon in our hours of need. These Fathers are both of the world and not, and Their unseen Presences serve as guide and path both for the journey we take together. We have so many names for these Fathers, more each day.

Other fathers are children themselves. Male bodies whose flesh-play unites the forces and we have children from children from children. We are all children, no matter when we beget or are begotten. So it is. Some fathers are men who never have a body child, yet who offer their best to the world. These fathers nurture those who come into their lives and help father them into wholeness. Some fathers are men who never have a body child, and whose fathering is in the realm of ideas or things. These men are great craftsmen and add much to our family. Some fathers are not men at all, or are men who exist in a liminal state either within or without or both. These fathers are people who hear a call to father that is beyond the flesh they were born with and who teach us that it does not take a penis to be a father.

Fathers and fathering are complicated. Fathers and fathering are simple. I love all of the many many fathers I have been blessed with – and there have been MANY. I suppose I have needed a lot of fathering. I know I have done some along the way.   Hear my prayer.   Oh Fathers, I give thanks for your being. I pour out water and milk and honey and wine to you all. I light a fire of sacred woods to honor you. These hands I re-dedicate to good works both great and small, bless them. This heart I lay beating upon the altar, hallow it. Each of my senses I give you, use them for goodness. Give me strength and endurance and wisdom and compassion, united in love. Help me to see you in others, and in myself. Let my voice be your voice, speaking words of healing. May my touch bring peace and joy to the world. Walk with me all ways and some day guide me to my truest home. I love you, truly. I do. Amen