Spring 1996 • Vol. XVIII No. 2 Kenyon Review Classics |

Father

  From the Autumn 1951 issue.   At paradise I placed my foot into the boat and said: Who prayed for me?          But only dip of oar In water similar to fog on a cold shore Sounded; and grey wreathes coiled around my head.   But who is waiting?          And the wind began, Transfiguring my face from nothingness To tiny weeping eyes. And when my voice Made words, there was a place Far, far below on earth. There was a tiny man—   It was my father searching round the waters at the wharf; Irritably he circled, and he called Out to the marine currents, up and down; But only heard a cold unmeaning cough And saw the oarsman in the mist enshawled.   He drew me from the boat. I was asleep. And we went home together.

Already have an account? Login

Join KR for even more to read.

Register for a free account to read five free pieces a month from our current issue and digital archive.
Register for Free and Read This Piece



Or become a subscriber today and get complete, immediate access to our digital archives at every subscription level.

Read More

Safety

By James Wright

  From the Autumn 1951 issue.   At paradise I placed my foot into the boat and said: Who prayed for me?          But only dip of oar In water […]

Lonely

By James Wright

  From the Autumn 1951 issue.   At paradise I placed my foot into the boat and said: Who prayed for me?          But only dip of oar In water […]

Subscribe

Your free registration with Kenyon review incudes access to exclusive content, early access to program registration, and more.

Donate

With your support, we’ll continue 
to cultivate talent and publish extraordinary literature from diverse voices around the world.