f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

June 13, 2008

father’s day without dad

Filed under: Haiku or Senryu,q.s. quickies — David Giacalone @ 12:22 pm

Looking for Father’s Day Haiku (or senryu)? You’ll find a few below and more here.

putting on my socks –
that little grunt
dad always made

almost sunset
the weekend dad
drags a sled up the hill

………….… by dagosan
“putting on my socks” – Frogpond (XXVIII: 2, 2005); inside the mirror: The Red Moon Anthology 2005
“almost sunset” – Frogpond XXIX: 2 (2006)

This is the first Father’s Day since my dad died (see “papa g’s night train,” Jan. 16, 2008). Over the years, I’ve always felt a little sad for sons and daughters who couldn’t spend Father’s Day with their dads — especially, for my child “law guardian” clients with divorced or separated parents, or the ever-increasing numbers of my Baby Boomer friends, whose elderly dads were dying.  Until now, my own worse feeling for myself at Father’s Day has been a little guilt those years I merely sent a card and phoned, rather than driving a few hours to see Papa G.

This year, Father’s Day brings me the bittersweet pangs of having no living father. A few tears will probably fill my eyes now and then on Sunday. Nevertheless, as he would have wanted, I’m going to try to stress how lucky I was to have Arthur P. Giacalone alive until he was almost 89 years old. [Click for my favorite picture with dad (and my brother, on the right), from his 75th birthday in 1994.]

boot hill
one abandoned

[In mem., Arthur P. Giacalone, who always got us back to the top of the hill]

Papa G was a jitter-bugger. I’m going to let Louis Prima’s version of Night Train help “bring my daddy back to me.” Whether you are a child or a dad, may you have a Father’s Day that is more sweet than bitter.

funeral dirge –
we bury the one
who could carry a tune

……………………….. dagosan – pending – Frogpond (Spring 2008)

day of the obit
inside his wallet
me at eleven

…………… by Roberta Beary – Moonset 4:1 (2008)

afterwords (June 15, 2008): See Nicholas Dawidoff’s op/ed piece “The Man Who Wasn’t There” (New York Times, June 15, 2008)

Most of my friends who grew up happily with their dads think of Father’s Day as a contrived holiday. It’s the people with paternal shadows for whom the third Sunday in June takes hold. So it’s not surprising, I guess, that those who are missing out on culturally signified occasions — the loveless on Valentine’s Day; the lonely on Thanksgiving — are the ones who are most affected.

Nicholas Dawidoff is the author of “The Crowd Sounds Happy: A Story of Love, Madness and Baseball,” and edited “Baseball: A Literary Anthology” (2002). I hope he has discovered and enjoyed Baseball Haiku (2007), and our prior coverage — a great book for a father and son to share.

“red hots!”
for an instant i’m ten
father’s still alive

……… by ed markowski infielderF

p.s. Head over to Morden Haiku for the original color photo of this illustrated haiku:

father’s day
the year’s first potatoes
in his old hat

… by Matt Morden – Morden Haiku (June 14, 2008)


  1. David:

    Beautiful work … the act of shaping memories to feelings.

    Don @ Lilliput

    Comment by Don — June 13, 2008 @ 1:23 pm

  2. Many thanks, Don. Your comments and visits are much appreciated.

    Comment by David Giacalone — June 13, 2008 @ 2:30 pm

  3. Your brother is Castro?!

    [Ed. Note: The webserver is not taking my Comments this afternoon.
    I tried to leave the following reply:

    Hmm. The Young Fidel, no doubt. I wonder who you think I looked like back in the day, Ms. Smarty-Pants: See http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/ethicalesq/files/2008/06/dag1971g.JPG

    Comment by Anne — June 16, 2008 @ 2:32 pm

  4. James Dean!

    Comment by Anne — June 19, 2008 @ 11:41 am

  5. Anne, did you mean Dino [Danelli] of the Rascals? You’ve left me speechless, but the Estate of James Dean is surely ginning up a lawsuit.

    Comment by David Giacalone — June 19, 2008 @ 1:14 pm

  6. Oh, at first I thought you meant the Little Rascals, and I thought “I don’t recall a Dino…” Nor do I know the “big” Rascals’ first (or last) names.

    So, no, not thinking of Dino Danelli, but I will go Google/image him right now.

    Comment by Anne — June 21, 2008 @ 8:59 am

  7. Well, in some pix he looks like an early Beatle; in later pix he looks like one of Mr. Kotter’s students. Perhaps you two were classmates of Barbarino, et al., in the 70s?

    Comment by Anne — June 23, 2008 @ 9:25 am

  8. Barbarino & Company sounds like the right ethnic group. Of course, I mentioned Dino because you brought up Mr. Dean. And, because a pretty girl in high school told me I looked like him 40 years ago, when the Young Rascals were making all their hit records. Sadly, after Googling, I’m afraid I may look more like him at his current over-60 age.

    Comment by David Giacalone — June 23, 2008 @ 10:36 am

  9. The Sweathogs were multi-ethnic!

    This was post-Brown v. Board, plus in NY.

    Comment by Anne — June 24, 2008 @ 11:15 am

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