My father and the sea….

I cannot separate my love for my father
from my love for the sea.
They meet and merge like the tides.
ripplespeak
Each year when we were young,
 despite his longing
to vacation in new places
 to satisfy his thirst
to explore,
he would carve out a week
to gather by the sea
with my mother, my sister and me
and lean into the motion of wind and waves
that smoothed back the furrows
from his busy forehead
and I’d  watch his eyes soften
to the soothing sound of the surf.
summer 2010
 They relaxed,  those deep brown eyes,
because there was room enough,
space enough,
time enough,
calm enough
to hear the light
and see girls in the sand,
ripplespeak
even ones that were hard to see.
That great wide sky
and vast expanse of rolling water
unpinched
 and turned
 my father’s face
and sometimes his eyes
would find mine
and stay awile.
I lived for those moments
when the sea and he
would look at me
ripplespeak
and smile.
I wonder at the power
 of fatherlove
and inhale gratitude
for love that looks and sees
and smiles
and
 believe
that my father’s love
will always find me
as surely as the shore
ripplespeak
is found by the sea.
check out Jillsygirl’s watery June challenge!

27 Comments

  1. Julia on June 18, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    Wow, I love your poem about your dad and your love for the sea blending and merging. Great pictures of your family. JB

  2. Mary on June 18, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    oh how i love seeing little Jen with her family.
    i can just picture you running, skipping and jumping through the surf and sand.

    boy do you and your sister look alike in that first photo…do you sill??

    wonderful memories, wonderful tribute to your Dad!

    xxoo

  3. Scrappy Grams on June 18, 2011 at 4:16 pm

    What a marvelous tribute to your dad.

  4. rachel awes on June 18, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    what a gorgeous tribute
    & what a blessed
    little girl
    & woman!
    LOVE!!! xox

  5. Nancy on June 18, 2011 at 11:35 pm

    What special words for a special Dad……eyes meeting…isn't that what we all want for someone to connect and validate our existence…..He did that for you and what a blessing…..

    Beautiful pictures and words from a special daughter's heart…..

    Hugs and blessings sweet girl…..

  6. S. Etole on June 19, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    wave after wave of love flows through your words …

  7. ELK on June 20, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    so deeply this touched me as only the sea and the sand and your writing can do .. i miss my dad ..so glad to have stopped by to see happy photos of yours ..big hugs friend

  8. Jeanie on June 20, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    This is beautiful — that first line — "I cannot separate my love for my father from my love for the sea" is perfect. In my case, it is love of the cottage and lake, but the same feeling — a life and a place so intertwined. I loved this post in every way.

  9. Bethany on June 21, 2011 at 1:03 am

    You had me at "…my love for the sea." 🙂 "Watch for hidden gifts when things tumble down and break apart" is EXACTLY what I needed to hear right now; I love that how you chose to illustrate that piece below. I am so grateful that we crossed blogs.

  10. Bren on June 21, 2011 at 9:58 am

    Beautiful, moving and powerful combination of words and images. It's amazing what Father love passes along to us in an unconscious, unguarded way. Love this piece Jen beautifully expressed.

  11. Relyn on June 21, 2011 at 6:19 pm

    This

    I lived for those moments
    when the sea and he
    would look at me

    is my favorite part. I know JUST what you mean.

  12. beth on June 22, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    what a special tribute…..and the part relyn pulled out, was my favorite, too…..xoxo

  13. Nikki on June 23, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    Beautiful tribute!

    Thanks so much for your sweet comment on my blog! I'm happy to report that the wedding was completely amazing!

  14. lisleman on June 23, 2011 at 3:56 pm

    Very nice – I found your blog by way of Jillsy Girl June challenge which is about water. You commented on one of the other player's post.
    You should enter this post. It's really good and entering is easy.
    Being from the midwest my memories related to water and dad are about lakes.

  15. Keith on June 23, 2011 at 5:28 pm

    Jennifer,

    I too have such memories of my father and your poem sent my mind and heart on a journey of rememberance. My dad is my hero and I cherish every minute I spend with him, even more so now that I am older and he grows old and his health is fading.

    Thank you for this heartfelt tribute to your father. It helped me appreciate mine even more.

    ~Peace

  16. Jillsy Girl on June 23, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    Thanks so much for joining and and so nice to meet you, Jennifer! I love the poetic feel of this post. My favorite part is "my father's love will always find me as surely as the shore is found by the sea." And BTW…you can submit as many posts as you would like!

  17. LeeAnn on June 23, 2011 at 6:40 pm

    Ah Jen, that post was so beautiful and such a precious tribute to your father. I love the "I lived for the moments when the sea and he would look at me and smile." You've been blessed to have had the love of such a special father.
    I kind of missed out on that, but I had a wonderful grandpa!

    Hope your recent by the sea time was fabulous too!
    ♥Lee Ann

  18. LeeAnn on June 23, 2011 at 6:40 pm

    Ah Jen, that post was so beautiful and such a precious tribute to your father. I love the "I lived for the moments when the sea and he would look at me and smile." You've been blessed to have had the love of such a special father.
    I kind of missed out on that, but I had a wonderful grandpa!

    Hope your recent by the sea time was fabulous too!
    ♥Lee Ann

  19. Kathryn Hansen on June 23, 2011 at 11:49 pm

    wow..that was very beautiful and touching!!

  20. missing moments on June 24, 2011 at 1:35 am

    That was very touching!

  21. Barbara Shallue on June 24, 2011 at 3:14 am

    Just beautiful! The water has the same affect on me as it has on your dad.

  22. ladyfi on June 24, 2011 at 5:32 am

    Such gorgeous photos – what a lovely tribute to fatherly love.

  23. Valérie, from Poetic chronicles on June 24, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    You touch my heart, Jennifer! This is a very beautiful tribute to your dad, and one that sends me back to my own memories of my own dad!

  24. Juana Aragon on June 24, 2011 at 10:10 pm

    This is absolutely beautiful…and I share that love for the sea too!

  25. christinemyoung on June 26, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    lovely ♥ your post reminded me of when my dad buried us in the sand up to our necks each summer 🙂

    thanks for visiting and leaving such rich comments on my blog

    nice to meet you

  26. rayfamily on June 27, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    Beautiful memories and lovely photos of time with your dad!

  27. Sandra L. on June 28, 2011 at 5:30 am

    Such gorgeous photos!
    I am glad you have a good relationship with your father. I did not and never will. He has been gone 23 years. So many chances lost…a man who would not allow himself to love his children. What a terrible loss, for him, for us, for the world.

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