Only the Good Things

by Paul A. Freeman
The Write Idea
Honorable Mention, February 2020
Judged by R.T. Castleberry


Today, only the good things, Dad.

I read a eulogy to the mourners, a potted history of Brian,
and afterwards you re-joined Doreen.
I found the elusive wedding ring that had slipped off your fleshless finger
and relieved your distress.
I cooked Christmas dinner with you, slowly, in the kitchen,
and we drank a glass of wine together.

We ate French fries and downed a pint on Yarmouth pier
and the seagulls snatched at the chips.
We watched meteors streaming through the night sky
and the frigid air chased us indoors.
We stood side by side, metal detecting on a sunny village green
and unearthed a young Queen Victoria.
We queued outside the British Museum, got a bag of roasted chestnuts
and saw the mask of Tutankhamen.

You bought me a Johnny Seven gun, the Christmas must-have toy,
and I fired plastic grenades into the garden.
You held me up before the camera, smiled at your son in the falling snow,
and the harshest of winters was forgotten.

Today, only the good things, Dad.


A lovely collection of Ray Davies-like details. --R.T. Castleberry

  • December 2020 Winners

    • First Place

      Avaricious
      by Judy Kaber
      The Waters

      Second Place

      To James Bulger, aged 2, murdered February 1993
      by two boys aged 10 in Liverpool, England
      by Christopher T. George
      Babilu

      Third Place

      Dr. Pachango’s Mango
      by Jim Fowler
      Babliu

  • November 2020 Winners

    • First Place

      Notorious RBG
      by Laurie Byro
      Babilu

      Second Place

      To My Old Age
      by Bob Bradshaw
      The Waters

      Third Place

      Beggar’s Lice
      by Ken Ashworth
      The Writer's Block