Barricades and Fire Brigades

      It hurts to see my dad in such great pain, lying in his hospital
bed, pale and in pain. Five tubes---or more---pulling and push-
ing his skin, dripping and sucking fluids into and from his body,
wrapped around like parasitic vines. Lies I say. This is Fathers'
day and this is not how I know my dad---strong, relentless---who
for so many years wisdom he sowed, love he showed...no wind
could blow him down. My own insensitivity is all that resounds
in my memory, now echoing like a felled tree in a forest of mem-
ory. I may never understand the pains he's been through while
harm he defused from me. This time the end is on his mind.
Selfishness tells me it won't be today, not this decade. I still need
him.

      I need barricades and fire brigades, come block his depar-
ture, come put out the fire in his soul, in the depths of his flesh.
O Savior, come give him peace and pull him through. Out of the
conflagrating agony and back to the strength of my dad. Why
is it that you choose pain to make us stronger, rain to make us
grow?...This morphine doesn't hold for long.... Master Designer,
you built our bodies to cope, but I'm confused and tired...my
mom faithfully sits by his side with minimal sleep. Solace is not
what we're looking for. We need your truth and your power, rain-
ing like a shower...your presence, an everyday miracle. You are
healing my dad in the greatest way possible and are very near to
us all in the face of reality and pain. The one word that stands
above the others and carries weight, though it soars like feathers:
Hope...and a barricade.

"The Lord almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our
fortress" --Psalm 46:7

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