Review: “Ode to Fathers” by Rudolph Ruddapoet

“Ode to fathers” is a spoken word poem, written by Rudolph Ruddapoet in praise of fathers. The poems spends more than a better half taking about bad parenting and and bad fathers, towards the end, we get to hear little about good parents. I found that kind of troubling though, we should have heard more about good fathers instead of the good overshadowing the bad, for good to triumph over evil, we need to present good more than bad.

The poem is very length, written with so much depth and figures of speech. Ruddapoet had so much to say, and did not hesitate to say it.

The mood was was very subtle with its criticisms. It was almost like saying even if you are not a perfect father, we still appreciate you.

The themes include pain, depression, fear, pleasure, pervasiveness, greed and so on.

According to the poem, there are fathers who lie, never tried, defiled, drank, abused, abandoned, instilled pain, governed badly, cursed, lived a pervasive life, and were irresponsible.

Then there was the second group. Those who are wise. They taught about food and nature, gave advice and told their children about love.

Figures of speech used
“Father’s who never showed their sons the end of a rainbow” is a hyperbole. Seems almost impossible to do that. “Those who have become drunken trunks because their roots are buried in rum.” This was exaggerated. “They make our mothers be beating drums to the cloud of their sorrows. ”
“Walking corpse”.
“For each scar that wears off after I’ve tasted your sin in a bottle of gin”.

“Those” was repeated so may times to refer to the different types of fathers.

Imagery and metaphor seems to Ruddapoet’s strong suit.
“Their children are music starved with no piece to open their doors”.
“Fruits who do not know which tree to be.”
“Whose curse we carry as flesh upon our bones”.
“Love is a look in their mother’s eye”.

“They will be dismayed like they came during foreplay.”
“To those fathers who find pleasure in visiting every cervix”.
“They take on every son and bury their crescent moon in their anus.”

“Fathers who make their babies cry while they make other babies”.
“They say we are too young to run the night, well except for those with mini skirts”. This play of words is hilarious. Ruddapoet really sowed his wits about this poem.

“They listened to us grow with misguided manuals, having accidental discharge between thighs of ‘we’ men or women.” He found a better way of talking about sexuality without being offensive, and accidental discharge was used instead of sex.

“My father is as wise as time and as old as night.”

In the later part of the poem where Ruddapoet speaks about the relationship between him and his father, his father advised him not to lead a complicated life. “Instead build a house that sits on no mystery.” He teaches him how to strive. Symbolism was when talking about love, water and crocodiles. A mother understands what love truly is, it is okay to cry sometimes, then there will always be bad people, the crocodiles.


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