"Cold Feet" by Francesca Farrisi

I lay my back against the hospital chapel floor

My father cold and stiff in the morgue below

I talk to God.


I talk to God

I yell at God

I yell at you, Pop

Wake up, please, just fucking wake up.


Your sins were made as white as

The body bag that covered your

Corpse on that table

Where I placed my hand

On your left big toe

Trying to make you Lazarus.

Making your frozen toe

Feel the warmth from my living hand

Feeling the faintest bit of heat transfer

Momentary hope, then ice needles inside

You’re dead, and you don’t want

To come back.

I hate feet, I hated your feet

Wore a sock on my hand as a child

When you paid me to rub them

And my sisters always took the bait

Not me, not worth the “ten cents an hour”

I’d demand much more in

Trade to touch your gross feet.


In the chapel the memory of my last moment

Seeing you alive

Floods my mind

I’m drowning in guilt

As I realize it’s not the memory I thought it was

Not the good memory of watching you play

Your blues harmonica to one of my favorite

Songs in church

It’s not the memory of me telling you that Theo

Looked up to you like you were everything to him.


No, I remember now the last time I saw you

You woke me from a nap

Asking me to come with you to New York

I was groggy, crabby, sleep was my priority

Not wanting to spend time with you

As you woke me up

Grasping for my attention

Forcing me to startle out of slumber

By grabbing my right big toe.


But I didn’t want to wake up

And now, neither do you.