Dad’s Dad By A.C. Dobell

Dad’s Dad

The same picture again
me on the old man’s lap
He’s smiling I’m probably two
probably smiling

You’re the only one he got to meet
There’s pride there—
in the way that you delivered a granddaughter
and sorrow— like how the only one
you almost named after him
(if we were not all girls)— never got the chance

You had sons later but maybe
it wasn’t as fresh then

I am imagining you with your camera
1996 in a hospital with your dying father
Plopping a child on his limp body
I wonder if you knew as you hit the shutter
just how many times you would look at the photo
Sometimes I do whenever I take a photo

I tell you I don’t remember
and you don’t hear me

holding the photo but gazing beyond it
using eyes to hear you better
He got to meet you

By A.C. Dobell


A.C. Dobell is a Filipina-American poet and visual artist living in Pittsburgh, PA. Her combination poetry and photography e-zine is published on Mercado Vicente. She is the co-director of Mused, an event that brings together artists of different mediums to inspire each other and connect over the creative process. She has work forthcoming in Eunoia Review. She works mainly in activism covering a broad range of environmental and social justice issues. She is related to the English poet, Sydney Thompson Dobell, a member of the Spasmodic school and friend of both Tennyson and Browning.

Leave a Reply