Monday, March 16, 2015


That angels used to take my father flying
Has never surprised me. Most likely
They enjoyed his company. As an adult
He would recall these flights with pleasure
Despite the fact that the angels -- known, as a class
To be generally early or late -- would sometimes
Fly hastily across
Brooklyn, fling my father
Back into his bed and then rush off.
Years after his death, travelling through the seventeenth century,
I met a Spanish nun, Sor Maria
Magdalena de Agreda.
To my surprise, she had met my father
And remembered him. The same angels who flew with him
Used to take her from
Seville to New Mexico.
She wasn't quite sure why. She sometimes preached
To some puzzled Indians, none of whom understood Spanish.
One night, she told me, the angels had my father with them
He was seven; his hair kept flopping over his eyes
The angels had lost track of time and then decided
It would be faster to get him home to 1933
By way of 1648. She is not the first I've met
Who cannot help wishing I was my father.

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