Sunday, September 14, 2008

Ben, my love

We were with Ben and his girlfriend, Marissa, last night. We see him often. Unfortunately for him he has the burden of being our only child now, but he has excelled in this role -- thrust upon him so suddenly and completely. He is all a mom could wish for in a son -- and so beautiful and talented besides.

A Poem That Wants To Be for Ben

They are always about Paul, my dead son
the one who died of his own free will
so many years ago.
My hordes of poems go on like a mantra:
his mania, depression, his delusions, escapades,
his suicide. They never fail to mention
his piercing blue eyes, the little half smile
that never showed his teeth, the smoky smell
and the way he slumped over the piano
like the thinker as he played.
Paul and his death have been my muse.

Ben’s living eyes brim over with love
as he looks down and folds me in his arms.
He is the son who says
I love you
every time we speak.
His smiles are wide
even when he faces disappointment
in his own life.
This son is the reason I choose to live.
Why isn't he the reason I choose to write?

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