Whether ideal, good enough, or not so good, a father sets a tone and indicates a path for a child. The stories and poems here are the work of writers who have turned both the light and the dark legacies of fathers into gifts for readers.
My own father made it a point never to touch me.
My mother and I remained apart. My father came late.
I was sixteen when he first ventured off into space.
He was unable to choose which one of us to kill first.
She told it in bursts, like she was a child again.
I wanted from him what I had never wanted.
I heard words of encouragement, a paternal blessing.
Papa’s link to that pond was a matter of blood.
In the photograph we look nearly the same.
One of us must be Cassius-like, with Cassius thoughts.
I hear myself giving advice in my father’s voice.