Published on Academy of American Poets (

Last Advice

The night before my father died
I dreamed he was back home,
and I in my old room
on the third floor, and he
was calling up to me
from the bottom of the stairs
some advice I couldn’t hear
or recall the next day when,
standing over him
back in the ICU
full of the chirping of machines
we had decided to unplug,
I remembered the dream
and heard him call my name.


Copyright © 2015 by Jeffrey Harrison. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on October 22, 2015, by the Academy of American Poets.

About this Poem

“‘Last Advice’ is from a series of poems about my father’s death. The house in the poem is the house where I grew up, outside of Cincinnati, and where my parents were still living when my father died. In fact, I was sleeping in that house when I had the dream, though not in my old room on the third floor.”
Jeffrey Harrison


Jeffrey Harrison

Jeffrey Harrison is the author of Into Daylight (Tupelo Press, 2014) and five other books of poetry. He lives in Dover, Massachusetts.

Date Published: 2015-10-22

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