Caitlin Yunuen Lewis

Father’s Day 2020

Dear One

Do you know

That the world stopped with you?


The day your heart stopped,

The world stopped.

Not only my world; not only

In a metaphorical sense,

The way all who love stop

When their dear ones go

Heading too early, and forever

Into the mystery.


As your life ended

Planes were grounded

Roads were emptied

People went into their homes

Schools, shops, churches shut

Capitalism’s wheels became stiff

And the push was parked at the station.


It gave us too little time.

I wanted to be with what remained

Of your human form.

To do things properly.

But we were robbed

Of that sad basic decency.


Sometimes I wonder, though.

Always the adventurer, the storyteller

Maybe this is somehow, bittersweetly

Strangely fitting.

Instead of a wake

You got a global human pause

Fit for an unknown king.

It was both bigger

And smaller

Than what you deserved.


Something else emerged, too.

When the people stopped

Other beings of this earth

Came back, the wild remembered.

Deer on city streets

Birds and foxes, free

Dolphins in canals

Air clear.

Nature’s reclamation.


Some say

Disrespect for wildlife

Is what started this

In the first place.

“Nature is a great leveller,”

You would have said.

And it is true.


Did nature reclaim you too?

Back to join

The non-human fold

Animal vegetable mineral

Or something else.

Are you still somewhere

Out in some version

Of the wilderness?


I don’t know where you went.

But what I do know,

What I felt in my bones, and yours

Was that wherever it was,

It was somewhere peaceful

It was somewhere golden

It was the deepest, most perfect wild.  



Caitlin Yunuen Lewis is a 2006 graduate of English, Media and Cultural Studies from Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology. She currently works at the University of Limerick. She is a facilitator and a researcher, with an interest in intersectional social justice, relationships, soul work, and the environment. Caitlin’s beloved father Michael passed away overseas in March this year, right before the Covid 19 pandemic took hold in Europe and South America. His funeral has not yet been possible due to the ongoing international coronavirus travel restrictions. In the absence of the usual mourning rituals, Caitlin has turned to writing poetry to honour him. This poem is dedicated, with eternal love and respect, to Michael.

1 Comment

  1. What a beautiful poem and tribute to someone so dearly loved. It will resonate with the millions affected by loss in these strange times.


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