David Lee Garrison




Overcoat           


I wear my father
like a handed down overcoat.
It fits better now that I am
old enough to know what is him
and what is me. 

My hair is thinning
in the same pattern as his;
I do not accept it with his grace.
His shoes are too big for me
and our footsteps rarely coincide.

He shares sorrow
only with my mother, but joy—
his own and that of others—
with everyone.  At commencement,
I leave the other professors

and vault over a railing
in cap and gown
to congratulate a student,
just the kind of thing
my dad would do.



The poetry of David Lee Garrison has appeared widely in journals and anthologies, and two poems from his book Sweeping the Cemetery were read by Garrison Keillor on The Writer’s Almanac. The title poem from his Playing Bach in the DC Metro was featured by Poet Laureate Ted Kooser on his website, American Life in Poetry, and read on the BBC in London. He won the Paul Laurence Dunbar Poetry Prize in 2009 and was named Ohio Poet of the Year in 2014. He lives in Oakwood, Ohio.








                                    

 

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