“Missed in Any Weather” by Ken Gierke

“The farthest thing from my mind

when I’m chipping away

at the frozen layer on my driveway

on a typical February morning in Missouri

that has as much rain as snow

is to wish for more of the same.

But here I am on a ninety-six degree day

in August wading through heat waves

rising from the asphalt outside of Target

that remind me of that hospital parking lot

in Vegas after visiting Dad in early June of ’93,

his chest reopened then closed and healing,

and thinking he’d be flying home soon –

we know how that worked out –

wishing I could have one of those

ice-crusted days.  Back then it was

crushed ice in his cup, relief

in what was supposed to be his recovery.

When he did come home on Father’s Day,

the gurney that rolled out of the air ambulance

held a ninety-year-old man who left

his fifty-nine-year-old self back in Vegas

and back home meant being back

in a Buffalo hospital with a glass of crushed ice.

I’d give anything to see Dad once more

holding that cup.  Better yet, just one minute

working beside him at Overland Express

in the ’70s with the snow blowing

between the trailers and across the dock,

his face just as red from the cold

as it would get if he were here with me

on this hot, August Missouri day,

that thought frozen in my mind.

Copyright © 2022 Ken Gierke

All Rights Reserved



Transplanted from Western New York, Ken Gierke has lived in Missouri since 2012. His love for nature, fostered by the Niagara River, continues in Missouri and is often featured in his poetry. His writing has appeared as a micro-chapbook from Origami Poems Project, as well as in several print anthologies, including three from Vita Brevis Press and those edited by d. ellis phelps, Susi Bocks and Colleen Chesebro. His writing also has been featured online by Amethyst Review, Silver Birch Press, and the Ekphrastic Review.  His poetry collection, Glass Awash, will soon be available from Spartan Press. His website: https://rivrvlogr.com/

Featured Images: Ken’s father and an ice chopper from Home Depot

Editor: Barbara Harris Leonhard

Amazon Best-Selling Author

Three-Penny Memories: A Poetic Memoir (EIF-Experiments in Fiction, 2022)

Pushcart Nominee, 2022

Send Submissions to meelosmom@gmail.com

Facebook: Barbara Harris Leonhard /barbara.leonhard

Twitter: @BarbaraLeonhar4

Instagram: @meelosmom123

Linked In: ExtraordinarySunshineWeaver

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15 Comentarios Agrega el tuyo

  1. Thank you for featuring this!

    Le gusta a 1 persona

  2. It’s my pleasure! A beautiful poem, Ken! The imagery of weather reveals how grief manifests with the memories of your father.

    Le gusta a 2 personas

  3. msjadeli dice:

    Truly heartfelt writing, Ken.

    Le gusta a 2 personas

  4. I was very moved by this poem, Ken. Congratulations on its publication.

    Le gusta a 2 personas

    1. Thank you, Liz. I like to remember my father as someone who enjoyed the outdoors and made the most of the opportunities available to him.

      Le gusta a 2 personas

      1. You’re welcome, Ken.

        Le gusta a 2 personas

  5. jonicaggiano dice:

    This is a lovely piece and I think the holidays tend to make us think about our loved ones. A big congratulations for this lovely publication. Joni

    Le gusta a 2 personas

  6. Thank you. I’m thankful for all that he taught me.

    Le gusta a 1 persona

  7. Ali Grimshaw dice:

    Ken,
    What a heartfelt reflection. I felt pain and longing for connection in your words. Beautifully done.

    Le gusta a 2 personas

    1. Thank you, Ali. It’s going on 30 years, but that connection feels as strong as it did back then.

      Le gusta a 2 personas

      1. Ali Grimshaw dice:

        It sounds like you have been nurturing it.

        Le gusta a 2 personas

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