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Where are his teeth?

No explanation needed for this poem. It is pretty clear.

The pain was unbearable

My 5 year old body slammed into the floorboard

Of my father’s Chevy Nova

As he drove into the truck

Head on

With speed

The pain was so excruciatingly unbearable

That I do not remember it at all

Except when I think about it and what it must have been like

I begin to shake and tremble

And cry uncontrollable

Recently I am able to feel sound

And apparently emotion

As I feel flashes of intense pain in my face

When I think of the accident

But I don’t really remember it

What I do remember

Sorry…give me a minute…

What I..


What I do re--


What I do remember

Is the blood running down my father’s face

Pouring from his head

And me shaking him

telling him to wake up

Please wake up

Please daddy








Don’t be





And he didn’t move

And he didn’t say anything

And the sirens

And the broken glass

And the impact mark on the windshield

Where my father hit his head

I remember talking to someone

Or I think I was talking

I don’t know how I was talking

Because they could not find my teeth

And it wasn’t until they got to the hospital

That they found them

Jammed into my head

The only reason he wasn’t arrested

On the spot

Because this was in Germany

Where they take drunk driving very seriously

The only reason he wasn’t arrested

Was his trunk had cases of alcohol

To take to the other military families

So the scene reeked of liquor

So they didn't test him

My mother tells me I was hysterical

And thought he was dead

And would not believe anyone who said otherwise

Back then children were seen and not heard

Especially in Deutschland

But I was hysterical

And I mom blistered the hospital staff to let me see him

And they relented

But I don’t remember that

What I do remember

Is that I always been unseen

And unheard

By my father

Unless I pick up the phone

And say daddy pick up

Please daddy

Talk with me

He won’t say anything

Or make any move to get closer to me

It took me 50 years after that accident

To actually feel anger about it

And it took a therapist to tell me

Steve, this is trauma

And you should stop making excuses for him

I now have children of my own

Almost grown

And at times I have been distant

Stuck in the mire of my own depression

But never once

Have they had to shake me

To try to get me to talk with them

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