By Neil C. (Siqokte) Robinson
In memory of artillery officer Elwyn M. Robinson; Tok, Alaska
I knew my Father as a thoughtful, organized and good-natured man.
I knew my father as someone who spent time with me when I was young--taking me hunting, fishing, canoeing and many special spots that I'm certain took much planning and perfect execution.
I knew my Father as "Robby," one of the millions of WW2 vets who came home emotionally shattered but asking no favors.
I knew my Father as someone who in the process of pushing his emotions down became dependent on alcohol and tobacco.
I knew my Father as someone with a tough constitution--who readily abused himself physically, but whom everyone still liked.
I knew my Father as someone who drank and smoked heavily for years without getting into trouble.
I knew my Father as someone who was finally crushed when his beloved wife, Elizabeth, died of esophageal cancer before him--caused most probably by second-hand smoke.
I knew my Father as someone dying of emphysema at age 79, brought on by inhaling cigars for 40 years.
I knew my Father as someone who had faults like all humans, but whom I still respected. And I'll always owe thanks to him for bringing our family to Alaska all those years ago, which is the place I know he loved, and so do I.
Rest in peace Father, old soldier, hopefully with Mother.
Poems must include the writer's name, phone number and address. They should be kept to no more than 300 words. Submission of a poem does not guarantee publication. Poems may be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, faxed to 283-3299, delivered to the Clarion at 150 Trading Bay Road or mailed to P.O. Box 3009, Kenai, AK 99611.
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