Remember Me
by Sally Clark

Daddy’s handkerchiefs
lined his pockets with
white embroidered linen,
eggplant plaid and bird-shell blue;
dime store packages of three
in shades of blue or gray or tan;
gifts from me,
at Father’s Day, Christmas
and birthdays.

Faithfully prepared,
he was never without
the means or the desire
to catch my tears
and carry them home
to remember
at the end of the day
how he had been there
when I needed him.

Now my life is stocked
with white paper tissues
to blow my sorrows into
and easily dispose of
the recipients of my distress
into conveniently lined receptacles
strategically placed
throughout my life.

But in my pocket
I still carry a
faded cotton memory of
his smooth-skinned care for me
and I will never forget
how he saved my tears
to remember me.

SOURCE: This poem first appeared in a gift book titled The Best Dad in the World (Howard Books, 2008).

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION”Remember Me, 1917-2001.”

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: After my father died in 2001, my sister embroidered a handkerchief for me with his birth and death dates. When my mother cleaned out his clothes, I asked to have his handkerchiefs and wrote this poem. I carry one of them with me, every day.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sally Clark lives and writes in Fredericksburg, Texas. Her award-winning poetry has been widely published in numerous journals, anthologies, books, and magazines. Most recently, one of her poems received recognition in American Poetry Review and Poetry Magazine chosen by Edward Hirsch for Honorable Mention in the 2016 Robinson Jeffers Tor House Prize for Poetry. Follow her at