Sherry O'Keefe

Driving Home from My Father's House by Way of County Cork

Mom was sure we'd get through the storm if we ate
a hot breakfast first. Eight inches of snow was blowing
into twelve. Outside my pickup was warming up

for the 220 miles of hazardous Montana spring weather.
We filled our plates, drank fresh juice, and answered our cell phones.  
Friends from Billings were warning us the sooner you leave

the better
. Which way should I go, I asked Dad, Judith Gap
or Roundup? I rehearsed for certain trouble: tire chains, 4 wheel low,
melting snow for water; but the worst that's ever happened to me

are things that never did.  Dad peppered his eggs
and blew on his coffee, then measured us
with that look. He jabbed thick Irish fingers towards

his two grandkids.
Listen, I've got something to tell you. In the midst
of road reports and measured drifts, he told them their names
were born between the nose of County Waterford and the curve

of County Cork on sixty-nine acres of ancient O'Keeffe homeland.
He swirled a potato in his egg and repeated the words I was raised with:
You'll get to where you want to go by remembering where you're from.

Sherry O'Keefe is the author of Making Good Use of August (Finishing Line Press). In addition to having been published in Innisfree last year, some of her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming inSwitched-on Gutenberg, THEMA,, PANK, Avatar Review, Fifth Wednesday Journal, Two Review, Babel Fruit, The High Desert Journal and Main Street Rag. She is working on a full collection titled Loss of Ignition and is the Poetry Editor for Soundzine. Her home has always been in Montana.



Current Issue
Contributors' Notes

Email this poem Printer friendly page

Bruce Bennett

Brent Calderwood

Ann Cale

Sarah Crossland

Philip Dacey

Tiffanie Desmangles

Moshe Dor on Rod Jellema

Lucia Galloway

Jane Ellen Glasser

Barbara Goldberg on Charles Simic

Joey Goodall

Heidi Hart

Richard Harteis

RJ Hooker

Glenn Irwin

Catherine Jagoe

LuAnn Keener-Mikenas

Jean L. Kreiling

Mercedes Lawry

Lyn Lifshin

Greg McBride on David Salner

Miles David Moore

Sherry O'Keefe

Jane Olmsted

Marie Pavlicek-Wehrli

Simon Perchik

Kathleen Radigan

Oliver Rice

David Salner

Lynda Self

Peter Serchuk

Janice D. Soderling

Ellen Steinbaum

Tim Suermondt

Kim Cope Tait

Brigit Truex

Michael J. Whelan

Leonore Wilson














Last Updated: Mar 10, 2021 - 2:35:35 PM

Copyright 2005 - 2021 Cook Communication.