Jason Morphew

Unconditional Love

Heritage



 

Unconditional Love

 
My father’s siblings
when he died
texted that his wife
gave him what I didn’t:
unconditional love.
This surprised me
never having known
conditional love.
If there are conditions
it’s family
sports religion
barring a father’s
only child from his only
father’s funeral.
It’s a cynical poem
groveling in rags
of language
for a kiss of blood.
 
 
 
 



 

Heritage

 
Driving home from the airport
from sustained turbulence
white knuckling Seneca
from Arkansas where I was barred
from my father’s funeral
by half-eyed vipers in Russell sweats
pill bottle of ashes
labeled Dear Old Dad
bouncing behind me with the toothpaste
my daughter asked me how
many cigarettes my father smoked
in what for brevity’s sake we’ll unlaughingly proclaim
his life.
Let’s see—two packs of Reds a day
for fifty years?
Maybe around 700,000.
Dad you don’t have a Daddy
now you only have a Mommy
to take care of you.

Yes honey and the person
Philip Morris who recently
expanded into electronic
he’s my new daddy
you see dear the world is nothing
but step-relatives
biology is bigotry
love’s ready for the future now.
 
 
 
 


JASON MORPHEW started life in a mobile home in Pike County, Arkansas; he holds a BA from Yale and a PhD in English Renaissance Literature from UCLA. The Washington Post calls Morphew’s full-length collection “dead boy” a “striking debut . . . presented with an edginess and sharp intelligence that make the poems pop,” and The Antioch Review calls it “brilliant.” He’s shared stages with renowned poets Claudia Rankine, Afaa Michael Weaver, and Joe Wenderoth. As a singer-songwriter, Morphew has released albums on the labels Brassland, Ba Da Bing, Max, and Unread. He lives in Laurel Canyon.


BACKNEXT

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: