It's been a week now since he passed and we had the funeral yesterday. It feels like society expects me to get back to normal; back to work and getting things done.
I suppose there's a cathartic aspect to that; but before I do, I wanted you to know about my dad.
He pushed the world to be a better place and as an Episcopal Priest for over 30 years, he personally helped many people celebrate good times, get through tough times, and develop themselves spiritually.
While he was Episcopal, he loved surrounding himself with clergy from other denominations and spiritual leaders from other religions as well. The outreach he did for all people in the communities where we lived was well known.
He was both formal and informal at the same time. I'm still amazed that he could so easily feel at home in any group of people. Despite his love of classical music and four syllable words, he was really a blue collar guy at heart and felt best helping those whose voices usually went unheard.
He enjoyed laughing at himself and was a frequent target of roasts from his friends. His parishioners once bought him a hat with two bills that read, I'm their leader, which way did they go?
Most of all though, he was a man I could go to with a problem or a challenge and he never told me what I should do. He simply helped me understand my options and figure out what direction I felt was best.
I'll miss the conversations, his calm presence he had with my children, and the way he could find the best movies to watch and books to read. One of his favorite poets was Walt Whitman. I read the final stanza from Song of Myself yesterday at his funeral and have placed it here below for you as well.
The spotted hawk swoops by and accuses me, he complains of my gab and my loitering.
I too am not a bit tamed, I too am untranslatable,
I sound my barbaric yawp over the roofs of the world.
The last scud of day holds back for me,
It flings my likeness after the rest and true as any on the shadow'd wilds,
It coaxes me to the vapor and the dusk.
I depart as air, I shake my white locks at the runaway sun,
I effuse my flesh in eddies, and drift it in lacy jags.
I bequeath myself to the dirt to grow from the grass I love,
If you want me again look for me under your boot-soles.
You will hardly know who I am or what I mean,
But I shall be good health to you nevertheless,
And filter and fibre your blood.
Failing to fetch me at first keep encouraged,
Missing me one place search another,
I stop somewhere waiting for you.