you're my dad.
the dad who held me when i was born because i was his first daughter
and he was going to love me forever – as long as forever had an expiration date
the dad who would buy me a hot pastry on the way to school because
he didn't know how to make toast the way i liked it and he didn’t want to upset me
the dad who learned how to do my hair after me and my mom moved out
so that i would look nice and presentable on the weekends i saw him
the dad who taught me how to how to keep my mouth shut because the wrong words would upset him.
you're my dad.
the dad who took me to bars and left me alone outside while he drank
the dad who smoked in locked rooms with me even when my lungs felt ashy black and gritty
the dad who passed out on the couch and left me awake,
too scared to go anywhere away from his side because you are
the dad who let strangers stay in his house and in my room and left me
on the floor in his strange, foreign, alien bedroom.
you’re my dad.
my too proud to apologize
but not too proud to tell me he never wants to see me again dad.
the dad who maybe somewhere in his stony and solid chest
has enough remorse to say sorry
because maybe it will hurt his reputation or indent his masculinity.
you're my dad and somewhere deep deep down,
i know you're sorry and you love me and miss me
and you hate that i moved countries and you hate
yourself for feeling too many feelings but i just hope
that you're happy because
you passed your fragile self esteem down to me
and you must be proud to know that i'm suffering too.
you're my dad and i'm supposed to love you.
in fact, you're supposed to love me, unconditionally
but you were never supposed to leave me on the ground
hurting, and screaming, and begging for help.
youre my dad
and i miss you
and i know i shouldn’t miss you because
you have given me a weight on my back that isn't worth carrying -
the weight of knowing that i'm your daughter.
you're my dad, and in every
possible way, you ruined my life
and i can never, ever forgive you.
but you're my dad. so i guess i should say
i love you and
tell you that i want to fix things -
because i do -
but the only thing i'm not willing to fix
because if it wasn't for you,
i would never have been broken.