He stares blindly out the window of another night
down on Bleeker Street, where nothing seem to change except a world gone mad.
I go to him, touch his shoulder feeling the quivering bone underneath my hand
but he doesn’t move, nobody is home it seems.
As I bend to kiss his forehead,
I think back to my childhood remembering the smell of him;
a rich elixir of leather, spice and a fatherly scent I could never quite put my finger on.
It was a smell of total comfort and one of extreme familiarity.
His scent is different tonight; he smells clinical, preserved and abandoned.
He smells like a familiar stranger, an ancient decade of melancholy memories,
echoes of voices lost in an obsidian mist . . .
I sit there with him as we both blindly stare out the window, watching a world gone by
and we sigh,
we say goodbye to the too many words left unspoken,
the things we once took for granted,
and the once welcome spaces where we no longer belong.
I take his frail and shaking hand and wonder (as I have thousands of times before)
how many more nights will he sit here all alone and stare?
And simply exist.
There is little left to say but with my father, somehow that’s okay.
Somehow, I know he understands.
He has taught me well.
He was never big on words anyway.
It will be very hard to forget the nights down on Bleeker Street and even harder to forget
the little man just sitting staring out the window . . .