Posted by: David | April 29, 2008


My next few posts may be about my dad. I apologize if they’re gloomy. I only want to process thoughts and to share them with you.

Here’s a poem (if you can call it that) about when I saw his body for the first time at the funeral home. I have very powerful images and feelings from that experience, and I wanted to record them in a way that communicated some of those emotions.

When I saw him on the table,

he was big and noble and sleeping

like a lion or an ancient king.

Michael laid his head against his great chest and cried.

His forehead was tough like rubber and smelled of formaldehyde,

but it was proud and regal.

His lips were unsmiling and firm, but not unkind.

Beneath his eyes were the criss-crossing lines that marked the place

of former laughs or smiles or cheerful greetings.

My arm trembled when I reached out to touch him;

my fingers slid down his soft and silver hair.

I leaned over to kiss his forehead, for the first and last time—

a kiss goodbye,

for now.



  1. David, your poem is beautiful, poignant, and apt. And you put it in a form that our dearest dad used so very often to celebrate us. I love you, Bro! James

  2. Thanks David for the wonderful poem about Daddy. Love, Michael

  3. Thanks, guys. I love you, too.

  4. David, I second thanks for your very moving poem. It aptly expresses both the sadness of your father’s passing into heaven along with the recognition of his noble, regal and humble character which I will always remember. By God’s grace, Mr. Hogue truly was a warrior for the Lord and I also look forward to seeing him again ‘ere in a short while.’

  5. Beautiful.

  6. David, Sam and I are so sorry to hear of the passing of your Dad. Unfortunately, we only learned of this recently. Your poem is beautiful! We are so, so sorry for your loss. Please let us know if we can do anything for you or your family.

    God bless,
    Sam and Sarah Chaiban

  7. I’ve heard from many of the siblings about your poem, but this is the first time I’ve read it. You are definitely your Daddy’s son. It’s amazing how God given gifts are passed on through genetics. I love you David. I miss our Daddy.

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