Friday, August 26, 2011

A Poem for my Son

I now know why
I spent evening
after evening
reading "Where the Sidewalk Ends"
to my wife's swollen belly;
each night
for nine months,
I traveled to the place where the sidewalk ends.

The soft, white grass
flickering and shining in the crimson son.
The peppermint wind blowing in my face
reminds me of
my father and
Double-mint gum.

I spent those nights,
before there was no sleep,
memorizing this place, this time,
captured by Shel,
so that now,
fifteen months later,
before bed,
I can continue reading
from memory;
after my son has pulled the book
from my hands and
declared, "Ahh done!"

I can still take him down
those dark, winding streets,
past the asphalt flowers,
hand in hand,
walking with a walk that is measured and slow.
I can lead my son
to the place
where those chalk-white arrows go.
I can lead my son
to the place
he already knows.

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