There came only one to my side
Fifty years of human interaction to trade for one pair of warm hands clasping mine.
The sheets were scratchy, the best penitentiary time could buy
“She can’t come”
The warm hand gently squeezes mine
She can’t…or she won’t
I couldn’t come to her play rehearsals
And she won’t come to me during my final act
There is no standing ovation
The seats are empty, popcorn crushed on the dirty floor
I should’ve bought her a ticket
Shallow breaths, reflective of my shallow attempts as a father
Shallow care, as shallow as the fight to not chase the dragon
Shallow living, mirrored full as her life would be without me.