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Commentary By Charles F. McElwee

On the Way Home

My father never liked August. It’s a cruel month for nostalgists. He harbored an Irish sense of melancholy—a tendency to romanticize sadness—and believed that the screeching cicadas, shorter days, and tired leaves marked the passage of time. Autumn’s arrival meant less time with his three sons: Charles, Robert, and Shane.

This penultimate day of the month, I found myself wandering downtown Harrisburg, my birthplace. At my childhood home in nearby Hershey, my mother sat bedside by my father, who, in poetic Irish fashion, was marking the final hours of his least favorite month in hospice care. “Par for the course,” I imagined him saying.

Continue reading the entire piece here at the Hazelton Standard-Speaker


Charles F. McElwee is editor of RealClearPennsylvania. Follow him on Twitter at @CFMcElwee. Adapted from City Journal.

This piece originally appeared in Hazelton Standard-Speaker