Andrew Analore lives and writes in Madison, Wisconsin. His poetry has appeared in the anthology ‘This So Called Life’ and in journals such as Stolen Island Review and Technology of the Sun. He is the 2020 recipient of The Bluegrass Writing Studio’s 2020 Emerging Writer Award for Poetry. He was poetry editor for the 10th issue of Jelly Bucket.
Invocation for Sons
So, you want to know yourself?
Follow your father.
Follow him back through the sepia
photograph of a little-league team:
That’s him, first on the left,
the smiling, dark-haired outfielder,
jeans cuffed, shirt sewn
from the most delicate fabrics –
youth and hope.
Follow him to his mother’s kitchen:
It’s winter and he’s got his draft notice.
She’s cooked cuccia. He eats
the sweet, boiled wheat and she prays
to Saint Lucy: Keep my son safe.
Follow him in the early morning:
He fills his thermos with strong
coffee, tightly laces his work boots.
Follow him as he grieves – his father,
his daughter, his mother, his wife –
Follow him into the silent forest
where he’s buried their loss
in shallow graves. He’s burned
the map and vows he’ll never go back.
But you’ll find he visits often.
If you want to know yourself,
follow your father to the
place where he’s wounded:
You’re wounded there, too.