Stephen Fuller *** Poetry, Essays

On a Hill in Wales, Father and Son


To the beginning son, go back with me:
Remember how I stood beside you when…

No, you only remember my absence.

Here we return with precision, an arrow
Fired by the great Tell who reveals us.
The apple on our heads, the gift of Eve
Who saw in us the beginning of Love.


On a hill in Wales, my Father enters me
Not with punishment, but his sadness.
Filled with a beauty that consumes me:
Simple sheep graze on green grass on hills, 
Too many verdant hues to name. The blue sky
Feels like compassion and hosts metamorphs: 
Clouds, lurking innocent children of beasts 
Whose anger gave us this green, these sheep.
Gave us wool that warms us in winter.
Gave us mutton that fills our hunger.
Beauty - these gifts represent - enters
Me like my Father returning to the land 
Of his own. “Get on your knees, son, sorrow,
You must feel it now.  These gifts given you 
Lie in waste like blood in scaled veins. Look up!
Through tears, I’ll show you once again!  
I will humble you and you will know Love. 
With it, do good like storm begets spirit. 
Rise up, face the life I called you to live.”


I got off my knees and climbed the mountain
To toss the precious that ruled like a curse
Masking my Soul, invisible to me,
Led me to the river to steal fish
From mouths needing food,
Kill those whose only crime:
The place of their birth.
I became a Monster…

A monster does not know it exists
Until the mirror reveals beyond blush,
Through the mascara of a mask painted 
In green rooms of youth, smudged 
By tears on life’s stage.
Now, the Father, who returns to me, 
Kneeling in supplication, 

“Get up! Climb, son, climb. Go find the path
To treasure granted by breath that fills lungs,
Breathe out songs only one Soul will echo,
Love that will be the melody of Life.”

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