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Vision of My Father

by Kelsey Shipman



This is the most listening

you have ever done.


In a hospital room,

unable to speak or move.


Hairs on your head

shine under fluorescents.


I run my fingers across your scalp.

This is the closest we have ever been.


You are unconscious.


Beneath the sheets,

your hands are mapped with purple veins.


I trace lines like back alleyways.

Avenues to pieces of you hidden

from me. Everybody.


This is where I say everything.


I hate you for your strength. I love you

immobile. Unable to answer me.


Machines tick as your heart beats

through your wrists.


I want you alive and unmoving.



Kelsey Erin Shipman is a poet, performer and educator. She excitedly teaches writing to middle school students in South Austin and undergraduates at Texas State University, where she is currently earning her M.F.A. in Creative Writing. www.kelseyshipman.com

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  • Response
    Response: Hollister
    The Diverse Arts Project - Spring 2012 - Vision of My Father

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