father and childI miss you
holding my hand,
and teaching me how to walk.
I miss my childhood with you;
I miss your care, your love—
I miss when you called me “my little mother,”
I miss you making me smile when I cried.
I miss staying in nights, talking
with you and sleeping in your arms.

Dad, I don’t know why I had to grow up—
I miss you: when I was sad, you
hugged me,
said everything would be fine;
you supported me when I was alone.
You gave me hope for my future.

I am here, father,
grown up now,
and standing on my own feet.
I won’t give you a hard time…
Where are you?
It is time I should hold you.

It is time for me to be for you,
time to take care of you.
time to return all you did for me—
Nights you didn’t sleep,
Days you didn’t rest
just to make sure I ate well.

You left me alone in a world,
where I must fight for what I want.
My happiness, my love in life
is gone with you.

You left this life, simply
making it hard to live without you.
Father, I don’t know why
I had to grow up,
to lose you,
to live without,
to see unfairness of life—

I miss you, Dad.
I miss our talks about struggle,
about love, about unity,
about keeping family together.
You fought with life and death,
but never gave up.
You lived your life with dignity,
and I’m Proud to be your daughter.
I have a long way to go,
but you are in my heart,
in my soul.
You guide me on my journey.

By Shogofa

The author is a student abroad. U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Sarah R. Webb