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Jocelyn Bertin Radifera

Today especially… Today especially, you’re not next to me. You’re not here in the morning having our daily cup of coffee, You’re not here putting butter and jelly on our English muffins, And you’re not here telling me how much you love the warmth of our home. Today especially, you’re not showing me how artistic you actually are. You’re not reciting to me one of your many favorite Jaques Prévert poems, You’re not singing to me some song about ‘Crème Au Chocolat, Oo La La’, And you’re not here playing your versions of Blue Moon or Boogie Woogie on the piano. Today especially, you can’t see if I’m free for lunch. You’re not here to order your usuals - liver and onions or the bento box. You’re not here to have an early beer and an after-a-good-meal puff. And you’re not here to take your afternoon nap in the sun-filled family room with Mom comfortingly by your side. Today especially, you can’t call me to ask how my day is going. You can’t tell me how many emails you’ve gotten and need to respond to. You can’t forward me news on the latest happenings in Madagascar. And you can’t send me weather updates at our next vacation destination. Today especially, you’re not next to me. You’re not drowning a long hard day in a good glass of bourbon. You’re not getting a good massage from one of your grand daughters or from me or Robert. And you’re not excusing yourself for some ‘fresh air’ after another of Mom’s wonderful dinners. Today especially, you’re not showing your pride in Robert and me. You’re not showing how much you love Claudia, Lauren and your grandchildren. You’re not telling me another story about our Malagasy family and heritage. And you’re not sharing with me your worries for Mom, for Robert, for me. Today especially, you’ve taken a big part of me. You’re not here to hear my stories, yet you’ve taken my voice. You’re not here to see me tackle the challenge of day, yet you’ve taken my strength. And you’re not here to taste my latest culinary experiment, yet you’ve taken my will. But today especially… especially today, I’m thinking of you more than ever. I’m remembering a great, great man. A devoted husband, a loving father, a patient and laissez-faire grandfather, A wonderful sibling, a respected peer, a dependable friend, a ‘just-tell-me-what-you-need’ kind of person And just the coolest cat around. Today especially… especially today, I really and truly painfully miss you. It hurts. I can’t see you. I can’t smell you. I can’t touch you. Today especially, you’re not next to me… But you’ll always be with me. Happy Birthday Dad. I love you. 2.20.14 / blr 

Bertin Radifera

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