“I Remember the Scream”, Albert Kohut 1915-1989

PItcher of Moon, available from Createspace, Amazon.com

PItcher of Moon, available from Createspace, Amazon.com

He was my father.  Had he lived, he would have been 100 years old today.  He didn’t, but even after 25 years, I remember the parent that always loved me. I have nothing material of his, except a mouthpiece from his French horn, but I have his DNA and I was his first child and his only daughter.  I have a lot of memories.  I remember this man who was loved by everyone, even the caged rabbit down at Tornquist’s, the corner store in Griggstown, New Jersey.  It took me years to understand him, and unfortunately these things sometimes only come after death.  He was  kind and gentle, basically a quiet man full of accomplishments and talents. No fanfare, no hysterics, and especially loved by stray cats and dogs.  Although he died before I started to write, he did see a few small paintings and I know he is the reason I am a poet.  His heart was huge, and he stands as an example of what is good in humankind. I’m proud he was my father.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

I Remember….


I remember the scream

In the middle of the night

Of something dying

Down by the river,

Killed by an owl

Or possibly a fox.

I remember bolting awake

In my parent’s bed,

My heart in my throat

My father just died

The funeral over

Sleeping in

His bed,

Afraid to move from this reality

To the next,

No comfort to be had

Even with the scent of

His tobacco in the sheets.

I wandered the house,

Touched the walls,

Looked through windows

To a landscape not

Changed over years,

Ran my hands down the

Black walnut banister,

Smooth, smooth

As if the days would turn back

Just by this touch

And he would be here.

That scream somewhere on the banks

In the middle of the night,

When I jerked from sleep to

Awake, knowing, he was dead-

The father who loved me

Was gone forever.

I knew then

I was unmoored from life

floating out of reach of love.

A scream that challenged dreams

He would come back,

He wasn’t awaiting the fire

He would wake up,

Much as I did,

In a cold-sweat fear

And slowly, slowly

resume his place in the living.

There are unseen things

That happen in the night,

Down on the river bank,

Where life is challenged by death

Where a rabbit screams his mighty last

Where the heart leaps to the throat,

Where the most we can hope

Is a silent ghost

Who walks out of the river’s fog,

Extends his arms

And comforts the living.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2014

“I Remember the Scream” from Pitcher of Moon, available at Createspace, Amazon.com, 2014

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2 Responses to ““I Remember the Scream”, Albert Kohut 1915-1989”

  1. TR Says:

    Hugs to you.


  2. ladynyo Says:

    Thank you, TR. Thank you for reading and understanding this loss.

    Hugs, Jane

    Liked by 1 person

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