Going home to cry: a poem and a eulogy, Nicole Bittar

I am going home to cry
In the town where my father died.
His presence will be omnipresent.

My mother is collecting me from the station.
Told my brother she wanted to.
My dear brother has lost his best friend. 
My mother the man she idolises.

We didn't recall that blessed being for a long spell during his malaise.
But now that he has passed through,
His spirit is soaring.
His loving arms reach out to cradle us in our sorrow.
Yes, there will be tears,
But they will only follow the echoes of his laughter and ours,
Ringing in the recesses of our deepest memories.



He never really put a foot wrong
and we all followed in his footsteps.
Dad was soft strength,
Was quiet calm,
Our family’s guiding light.

He encouraged but never pushed.
Dad cared deeply as Deep was his Mother’s maiden name. And his middle name, long before it was fashionable to attach the mother’s surname to the family name of her second-born son.
Malbina Veronica Deep was a pioneer in matters of self respect, business and putting family first, and these qualities were imbued in her beloved son, John.

As a father, Dad was purely and simply the best.
He adored us all with a passion that was matched only in reciprocation.
He did everything for us and very little for himself.
Dad never once criticised me, even when it might have been warranted.

He said in my wedding speech that he could normally talk with a ‘mouthful of marbles underwater’
Yet was awash with emotion when the time came to speak from the heart, even if only for a short while.

For Dad was all heart; as Kipling wrote: he could walk with kings yet not lose the common touch.
His gift for the oratory was as profound as the depth of love for his family and friends.

He was our rock made malleable
In his spirit for giving and providing.
Dad was the softest touch in an unyielding world yet was by no means a pushover.

His intelligence was as fierce as his pride in his children, grandchildren, love and devotion for his wife, who as we all know would have moved mountains if it should be Dad’s wish, and vice versa; who loved dad more than life, for he was and remains the deepest part of her life.

We feel blessed to have called him our father.
We feel shellshocked that he is gone.
We feel serene that he is at the gates of Heaven, being greeted with open arms by his darling Dad and Mum, his dearly departed friends, already waiting for him to toss a fishing line or two into the crystal waters or swing a golf club with finesse.

We feel certain that he will be as present in our lives from on high as he was in mortality.

He was and remains our Dad. He was and is incomparable.

There are no words to describe the hole he has left in our hearts while simultaneously filling them with the deepest love, the most cherished memories.

We missed the man he was even in his sickness. We wish him the best of health and happiness.
We will see him again with the Lord’s blessing, when the time is right.

We adore him now and forever.