Last Time I Hugged My Father (RIP Ronald Baggs, 1941-2014)

our tears fell like
redwood forest winter rain
when Ron left my house

we knew we’d never again
physically embrace, alive

[This was before we had any reason to believe he had cancer or anything life-threatening. But it hung in the air unspoken between us, “We won’t see each other alive again.” Even as we made plans for later visits, a longer visit this time, we somehow knew it would never happen. After his cancer diagnosis, my father and I finally admitted to each other that we had known, way back then, that this was our last chance to see each other. We still don’t know how we knew. I still don’t know, that is. He’s somewhere beyond knowledge, now.]

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