Daddy Took A Gun
by Kathy Cohen
Daddy took a gun in ‘61
And blew off the top of his head
Ever since he left me waiting at home
I’ve been less alive than dead,
Less alive than dead.
Daddy wrote a note in ‘61
And kept it in his drawer
Mama tore it up, said it was sad
He won’t be writing more
No he won’t be writing more.
Daddy rode a train in ‘61
From Mobile to Eagle Pass
Where the scorpions crawl and the buzzards fly
They laid him on the grass,
Laid his coffin on the grass.
Mama took a picture in ’61
Of Daddy laid out to rest
I found it after Mama died
Like a knife into my breast,
Oh a knife plunged through my breast.
‘Fore Daddy shot the gun in ‘61
I told him I wished he was dead
He never looked up and he never looked back
And he nevermore came to my bed
No he nevermore came to my bed.
I killed Daddy in ‘61
But he’d already killed me
When he said if I told, then Mama’d leave
And I was only three
A babe of only three.
Now I’m Daddy’s age as in ‘61
Still more dead than alive
A note waits in my bottom drawer
In case I don’t survive
Oh I’m barely getting by.
A native of Mobile, Alabama, and a graduate of Millsaps College and Mississippi State University, Kathy Cohen taught Composition at both schools. She has published fiction and poetry in The Saturday Afternoon Journal and essays in Millsaps Magazine.
Her screenplay, Imminent Peril, written with her husband, author Edward Cohen, was optioned by Oprah Winfrey, and their screenplay, Blood Relations, was a winner at the Austin Screenwriting Festival. Despite much ado, not one of their screenplays was ever produced, and Kathy is happily teaching English as a Second Language to immigrants in South Central Los Angeles.
Write Kathy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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