Spoken Word Poem: My Papa was a Rolling Stone

Papa Really Was a Rolling Stone

My papa really was a rolling stone…

Even as the illness slowly pulled him away / like the child tugging at the sleeve of a parent / desperate for attention.

Yes, Reaper, we all saw you / But my papa beat you back for as long as he could / unwilling to bow down to a false king with a god complex.

Yes, the guest bedroom may have become a veritable prison cell / void of voluntary movement / filled only with the memories and regrets of a life well-lived / but he fought…

You see, my papa could’ve been chillin’ in the sun with Steph Curry / ‘Cuz he was the very definition of the word WARRIOR / He lived in a Golden State of truth and fury.

To him, sugar coating was considered a sin / he’d rather reconcile the guilt of hurting your feelings / then spew forcefully manufactured rainbows and sunshine from within.  

The welcome mat at his doorstep should’ve read “Left Turn Only” / Gravity viciously yanking visitors to that side of the spectrum / The loving embrace of liberalism enveloped every guest / conjuring up feelings of the warmth and safety felt only by a tightly swaddled newborn.

When the storm clouds arrived and concealed the brightness of the sun / he refused to let us retreat and seek refuge from the rain / Instead, we sat on the porch with unflinching fortitude / playing round after round of cribbage / Dollar a game; nickel a point / Notebook acting as a ledger / a hastily written tab for winnings that would never be collected.

He was the perfect mix of mentor and friend / an ever-patient teacher whose hand he’d lend.

And as I remember those moments with a half-smile and tear / I can only hope he’s out in the universe somewhere / With a whiskey on the rocks, a smile on his face / as he too reminisces about the affairs of yesteryear.


My papa was a rolling stone.

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