With poet Eugene Redmond. April 2010

Yesterday I had one of those long conversations with a friend about the strange nature of parenthood, and my participant observation on fatherhood and its many complexities, and how relationships with fathers inevitably shape our outlook on the world whether we like it or not. How could I have forgotten that today is Father’s Day?

There are many questions I would ask if I could sit my father down for one whole day in a conversation, many of them about his childhood and how his childhood adventures shaped his later preoccupations. I would ask for specific details, facts, and pointers, and I would write them all down because of a time that my child(ren) might want to ask me about their grandfather at a later time. I may not take all his advice on life, writing, broadcasting, women or children, but I would delight in listening to them for an umpteenth time while wondering, “What would I be like when I’m his age?”

This generation exists because of the last one, and the cycle continues. Happy Father’s Day to all fathers out there, including my own, and my adopted fathers, intending fathers, and to my brother, and to my brothers-in-law. You make the world go round. Or do you? 😉

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