by Marshall Jamison

Listening for the sound of a well remembered
my father always whispered aloud as he paused
before the climb
up the stairs to the attic, to wish me soft
good night
and say the prayer he taught me by the candle’s
flickering light.
I recall well it promised joy and sweet
relief of pain
and it answered all my doubt as I heard it
again and again.

For I knew if he believed it surely must be so
and for sixty years its message has shown
me how to go —
Up the attic stairs to the memories
of my youth
to give my little grandson my father’s
living truth.