Fall 2007 • Vol. XXIX No. 4 Patricia Grodd Poetry Prize |

For My Father

Third-Place Winner2007 Patricia Grodd Poetry Prize for Young Writers   a kind of fisherman's tale I. You took me to the side of the yard, cast your line, and dubbed me skipper. I asked you if we would have to wait for 84 days, like the old fisherman, to reel something in. You shook your head and a fish pulled you     down. I took hold of the line, but soon found myself next to you under a mound of leaves. II. I would not have remembered this if it hadn't been for the photographs, for the smell of autumn preserved in your red flannel and in my hair. This was before you put on a tie, before you gave up on your boat and your skipper. III. Every nautical mile I turn to look behind me, making sure the fish has not come to take me to the city, to where you retreated after it swallowed you whole.

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Hannah Irvin is a sophomore at the Alabama School of Fine Arts in Birmingham, Alabama. She plans to attend college and pursue a career in journalism.

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