For My Sweet William James (a letter to my son, while ill. Summer 2009)

My sweet William,
The summer is slipping sneakily by, with a void left in my arms where you used to constantly be. Another Sunday spent on the deck, pointlessly reading 2-year old back issues of Newsweek and resisting (not always successfully) the urge to email your father about the damage he has done.
Everything hurts so acutely. Seeing other baby boys sitting in the baby seats of the shopping carts at Pathmark. Magazine ads for baby formula. Your tiny denim sun hat, now way too small for your head, lying forlornly on the piano bench.


It is that magical hour, when the light cornflower blue of the sky begins to turn ever so slightly pink, and as always, I am thinking of you, my sweet son. Again the baby pool has amassed a pitiful collection of leaves and wayward insects, who, thinking they might take a quick dip, met their untimely demise. The lightning bugs are just starting to proudly flash their taillights and I wish I could show them to you. But you are not here, and here I sit – pruning my basil plant on someone else’s back deck…and watching ants meandering aimlessly while wishing I were one of them. Oh, if only to feel nothing.

The sun is going down, and it is growing too dark to see what I am scribbling. I am crying, longing to hold you and never let you go.


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Filed under children, diary, imperfection, life, love, nature

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