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Monday, September 8, 2008

My Dad is Dying


To everything there is a season...David J Ransom
November 4th, 1930-September 8th, 2008

It has been a very long, wonderful summer. We, my beautiful wife and I, did many a fun thing from kayaking in Rock Hall to frolicking on Gunnison Beach at Sandy Hook. I passed my 50th milestone in grand celebratory fashion and now another life changing moment looms. My long suffering pop is drawing his last labored breaths as I write. And here with you my stragers, family, fans and friends, I contemplate the man, his life and suffering. I am his only son. Not to wax maudlin or macabre, here follow words inspired by and dedicated to him. This is his song from me, I who have uttered and written so many words to he who has said and written so few. I would carry his burden for him if I could. His pain has been passed on and it is a beautiful, sublime pain. The pain of bewilderment, of mystery, of love.

Fallen through the cracks
slipping through the bars
fought off heart attacks
sleeping in his car

enduring the pain
of going insane
finding our way
back through the rain
through the rain

Splashed in the gutter
and scaled the heights
been good for nothing
and bad for spite

now here we stand
naked as the day we were born
drowning our sorrow
with booze and porn

chased by our demons
through most of hell
listened to the stories
of how he fell

hollow inside
like a buffalo horn
swallowing our pride
with booze and porn

remembering the days
of hot summer nights
heavy petting displays
at every red light

sick and tired of waiting
hopeless and forlorn
gonna find a young lady
who's into booze and porn

We did, at least once, all the things fathers and sons do, and did some that were maybe a bit unusual. He was there for my first Guinness, fed me my first steamer clam in a Bayonne bar, took me for my first ride on a scaffold, gave the taste for lobster, vodka, baseball, fishing for catfish and so on. For him I am a Yankee fan, and a football Giant fan, and a fan of the South and a southern gentlmen. My father is as flawed and human as a man can be. There was high life he aspired to and low life he indulged in and we have shared it all. He was always there with a twenty whenever I needed it. He taught me how to drive a nail, and cut slate by hand, how to bend copper and tie a hitch. He showed me the ropes by example and how hard work is, and what work is, and what sorrow is. And there is strength. A deep and poetic strength which bore all manner of hardship. There of those of you who knew him in his salad days; knew the ruffian, the swashbuckling cowboy who loved the movies and lived them as if they were real. There are those who knew him as an elderly man sober as Job who religiously watched those same movies from his chair day after day. Now I wish, and have always wished, his pain could be lessened, his spirit healed. A man of practically no words, but of action that to this day and for many more to come has and will inspire me to create art in his name. The D in MDRansom is for David. I am his son, his buddy. For ill or good I will always love him for he is my father. David Jude Ransom. What we have shared defies explanation. Dear lord, I pray, recieve your broken son, and make him whole in death as he was in the beautiful youth of his life.

"He was a man, take him for all in all, I shall not look upon his like again."
Hamlet