Fire Bugs

Fire Bugs

Do you see them he says to me

No Dad, I can’t see them how can that be?

You have to look closer then you will see

The flickering fire bugs jumping from the tree




The fire was our favorite place to sit

We would stare and gaze during those relaxing days

A complicated maze of memories

If I could capture those fire bugs

Put them into a glass jar

They could light the way so I could see far ahead

Of me

To walk through the maze

The haze of what was

To those lingering days

By the fire

I would stay and talk until you made me retire

Knowing time would expire

At any moment

I never can tell the story quite like you

But I try, allowing the memory of you

To flow through me

To them

Dad would say:

Do you see them he said to me

No Dad I would say, how can that be?

He said you have to look closer then you can see

The flickering fire bugs jumping from the burning tree

My Dad died suddenly four years ago from a brain aneurysm, on Fathers Day.  I have 2 ‘half’ siblings that were living with my Dad when he died.  When he died the Mr. and I took custody of them.  Matt and Mandy were 12 and 14 at the time.  They are now 16 and almost 18!  This poem is about how important it is to me to get this story right.

ImageLaying by the fire at the cottage months after Dad died



  1. The Running Son

    “…see far ahead
    Of me”
    Jenn, I enjoyed this soo much. certain line breaks, like the one above, are almost breathtaking.
    I too am sorry. The photo below the poem is “mood-telling” in you know what I mean, and very revealing of the struggle. Honored to read this.

  2. BDagaz

    When he was younger, my son and I used to catch glowing bugs in our hands at night
    – such simple things, taken for granted, now missed.
    As the oldest of four, this piece hits home, but more so, in yesterday.
    When lost, as children, I led siblings back ‘to start’ in a follow the leader child chain.
    But as adults, even living within reasonable visitation distance, we couldn’t be more disconnected.
    Hearing voices, paranoia, raving loudly to myself alone, being unbalanced, coping badly – that’s not something to share with them now, but maybe, hopefully, the others are closer.
    There was evidence suggesting that.
    They probably are.

    Regardless of means, there’s points here, for plucking alive, long coldly static, heart strings.
    That’s not easy to come by, when dealing with a reader, this jaded, this cynical.
    There’s a tinge, almost like admiration accompanying those ‘plus marks’, for picking them up, for ‘family care’, but that requires trust, and that’s not to be handed out casually in virtual realms, or even elsewhere.
    I DO forget the points right, far too easily, for such warm motions, like welfare.
    But for now…thank you much
    for sentiment and tug,
    Mrs. Jennifer,
    with the writings thereof.
    (I’ll apologize in advance, at the risk of doing so somewhat insincerely, for not knowing which social infractions were enacted, aside from length, advance apology, general lack of tact, and bad rhyme.)

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