Letter to an Agoraphobic Father

Colleen Abel 


In my father’s house are many mansions

Two hundred rooms in each      in each

a suitcase filled with tiny fathers


bottle-shaped     shaped

like paperweights      Russian dolls of dads

little carved dice fathers      ivory


skulls      marbles      arrowhead fathers

inside the burnished leather

lacquered with stamps of nowhere


my father has ever been      the nowhere

of our ancestors      unflown planes

my inheritance      unsailed ships


I lift every piece of luggage

his helpmate      his bellgirl      our cargo