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WORDS THAT OCCUPY SPACE


I believe this to be a first:
The Oxford-based, award winning sculptor Martin Smith came to one of my readings and wept at the hearing of my euology to my father Dr. Victor Goldkind, THE LINE YOU WALKED. I had never seen my words have an affect on a man like that before and I was curious to know who Martin was.

It was over several pints of ale at The Bear pub in the gothic quarter of Oxford (where bears had indeed once been baited where we drank), that Martin and I became fast friends; comparing our weaknesses for falling too readily in love with beautiful women and our perchants for Dionysian distraction when not working. It was towards the end of the evening that Martin suggested he might try a a physical interpretation of the poem that had moved him. My own primoridal link to sculpture through my mother and her brother, made the idea inevitable.

THE LINE YOU WALKED

THE LINE YOU WALKED

And here is the end result.
Words that occupy Space.
THE LINE YOU WALKED

I am my father.
I am my father’s son.
I am my father’s father
I am my daughter’s son.

I am the line that walks these dots
Connecting one Pole to another
One foot follows the other
From Lodz to Ellis Island to Brooklyn to Washington to Marseille,

To the frozen thunder of L’Ardennes,
Munchen, Salzbourg, Yale,
San Pedro, Cham Kom, Chichin Itza
Lansing, San Diego, Berkeley,
Paris, Heidelberg, London
One arrow pointing down to this hallowed ground

We stand on.
These dots, stones, these beats, these memories We tread upon:
What you could not take with you,
You have left behind
For us. For me. For her.

THE LINE YOU WALKED

THE LINE YOU WALKED

In the meaning you finally found
Behind eyes glued shut
Behind my daughter’s eyes glued open
In wonderment, in curiosity
In the mind’s intrepid search for the reason in it all.

Stepping forwards, stumbling backwards.
Looking up, looking down, looking sideways at the world.
Looking over your shoulder with a joke, with a laugh and a dimpled grin. Man makes plans while God laughs.
Student, soldier, teacher, brother, husband, father,
Grander father still.

Between these dots
We can see the being of who we were,

Who we become and who we are:

One in the same.

I am my father.
I am my father’s son.
I am my father’s father
I am my daughter’s son.

poem

THE LINE YOU WALKED

Your work, my father, is not yet done.

 

For my father, Dr. Victor Herchiel Goldkind 1924-2011

 

 

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