Cut Off From My Roots

Losing a parent is unimaginably painful for any child, because a parent is irreplaceable. Nowadays many innocent children lose parents through divorce.

I first lost my parent as a toddler, figuratively, through divorce, and decades later sat shivah.

I was put into the unenviable position of sitting shivah for a parent who never really got to know me or my children and didn’t enjoy an iota of nachas from us in Olam Hazeh.

This poem was written during the sheloshim as a zechus for my parent.

Dear Tatty and Mommy,

Once upon a time

When life was song in rhyme

Before your marriage unfurled

I entered your world…

Then, after much was done and said

And your former bond was dead

The two of you were no longer wed

Please listen to my heartfelt plea

Treat each other with civility

Because any acrimony will accompany me for eternity

Doesn’t your child deserve good memories?

When you knock my parent, your ex

Me, it does pain and perplex

It cuts me to my inner core

It’s with me that you’re waging a war

You can cut the knot and start anew

But I’ll always be tied to both of you

You can unlink the chain

But both of yours I’ll remain

You can wash your hands clean

But you can’t eliminate lineage from my genes

Before every decision you decide

Peel away each layer of pride

To ascertain what is goading you inside

Please reflect

On the unavoidable side effects

Before it’s retrospect

Severing me from blood relations

Necessitates serious contemplation

Because another’s amputation

Should never be done for self-gratification

Please treat me as a child and not like ammunition

As a person, not an acquisition

My outcome depends on your behavior

You can be my ruination — or my savior.


Your Child