Note: Now, at the commencement of my birth month and the approach of my natal day anniversary, marking the penultimate year of my seventh decade of life in this world, thoughts of the meaning of mortality arise. This is one…


I saw him.

Years ago.

‘Twas only a glimmer of him;

the barest shimmer of his eye.

So spare, I wasn’t (I couldn’t be) sure.

Funny (not hilarious, but ironic), it seems to me,

how folk, looking at babies,

characteristically (unconsciously?) searching for the iconic

(a representative symbol pointing beyond to another),

turn to one parent or to the other or to both,

saying, “Your child looks just like you!”

Then, it also seems to me, as days become years,

children grow into their own, individual, grown-up faces;

the ones with which on all of life’s paths they will walk,

the ones through which they will see and speak to all,

the ones of which they will be seen and heard by all,

the ones by which they will be known by all.

Then, it does not seem, but rather has been for me,

as my days have become my years,

now, by time’s premeditation, I see him mirrored clearly;

my countenance, aging, turning into my father’s face.

© 2021 PRA

2 thoughts on “Likeness

  1. Thank you for this Paul!!

    As you know, I’ve been spending a lot of time with my Mom! I’ve been within inches at her face at times, studying it…. trying to find myself in her face! But I really don’t see myself in her. I think it’s because I’ve been told my entire life I look exactly like my father. During this time I wish I could find myself in Mom but I haven’t… so I just let our love, as opposed to our likeness, guide us.



    1. “…I just let our love, as opposed to our likeness, guide us.” Beautiful!



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