The child in his arms, such a precious gift, her sweet little smile would make his heart lift. Born into a love that none could compare, baby blue eyes framed with curly blonde hair. Conceived and born on such love filled days, from the moment he held her he was blown away. His heart did a flip and his smile was so wide, his devotion to his daughter could not be denied. And he looks on down to the rocks below, waves crashing over as a cold wind blows. His mind is adrift from a soul torn apart, a lump of cold dread where once was a heart. Her eyes never dulled for she always had a grin, never a bad word did she have for him. A bond so strong and a love so entire, her Daddy would cradle her whenever she was tired. He would always be there to support her in all, he’d always pick her up whenever she’d fall. Laughing, singing and playing in the park but storm clouds were soon to make the dawn turn dark. And the glistening rocks washed by tidal attack, the wind is now rising and pushing him back. His mind is flying far out to the sea and his sorry soul is crying out to be free. The debilitating fear as they stood by her bed, a mother and father with eyes cried red. The knowledge; a curse as they counted the days, not really knowing what to do or say. The clock on the wall slowly ticking away the moments of life till the end of her days. Holding each other in a trembling embrace, neither one daring to turn from her face. And the rocks are beckoning; inviting release, a way out of torment, a welcoming peace. Standing aloft on a cold cliff-top ledge, moving ever closer to release at the edge. Her chilling cries in the dead of the night; the rush to her side as she stared out in fright. He cradled his child, reassuring till when she would settle back off; restless slumber again. Standing there, knowing that soon she would fade and wondering now at decisions they’d made. Had they done all they could and tried all there was, would the hurt be any less if they knew the cause? And the rocks are washed by a wind whipped tide, the pain of his loss is now too much to hide. Seagulls are crying high overhead, mocking derision echoing round in his head. When the battle was lost on that cold winters eve, though they knew it was coming they just couldn’t believe. To hold her small hand for the very last time, to kiss her cold cheek and wonder at her crime. To see her frail form inside a pale shroud, the wailing and crying; beseeching so loud. He felt something close; collapse deep inside and all he could think of was to run and hide. And the image of the rocks on the raging seabed, swimming, pulsing and rushing in his head. The wind in his ears, tearing wild at his clothes and the smell of the sea assailing his nose. A tiny voice made him glance to his right, eyes blinking wide with shock at the sight, for there in the mist that swirled at her feet was his daughter, with hands held out to greet. Her gentle sweet smile he remembered with pride as she beckons him now to come to her side. His tear-filled eyes give a single blink and the vision is gone; he's alone on the brink. And the rocks down below, beneath the crashing waves, washing the memories of so many dark graves as he offers his body to the wind and the rain, relinquishing life and sorrow and pain. * Written by Darren Scanlon, 7th July 2014. Revised by Darren Scanlon, 22nd July 2015. ©2015 Darren Scanlon. All rights reserved.