Willamette to Columbia

The hardest lesson that I have learned:
Life is but leant, and must be returned.

There was a time, when you flew away:
A Dad leaving his kid behind...
And though I wept that you wouldn't stay,
There was no fighting against the tide.

Corcelles-Toronto, across the globe!
A journey to the other side of the world.
Your path took you where I couldn't follow,
Where your face was unseen and my voice unheard.

I spun the coin of love and hate,
Uncertain of which side would appear.
Love it was, and so my fate
Remained to cherish that father dear.

The years, gently, they sailed away.
The Dad grew old and the kid grew tall.
Until, at last, on an April day,
You passed beyond the reach of all.

Now you sail on calmer waters,
Bourn by silence and endless sleep.
The kid watches as his father
Once more travels beyond his reach.

As I stand with your friends, here, today,
A final farewell dies in my throat.
I strain to recall some happier days,
As upon the water I set you afloat.

Willamette, Columbia, and then the Sea:
To nature you are at last returned.
And though I weep you were taken from me,
I rejoice in thinking: your home is the world.