and sit in that recliner
(dusty rose doesn’t suit you)
you, so big now,
(no more baby blue)
Your cheeks are wet tonight
your chest heaves
ragged and broken
breath catching in rough waves
on that long-ago day they yelled “push.”
My heart breaks
until I hear, through the tears
the echo of your first angry cry.
One tough guy, I thought
and still do.
. . .
This day in your chair
your chest swells,
a laugh-bursting barrel of love
booms and ricochets
And I’m hit
Your smile morphs
(no teeth, baby teeth, big-man brilliant teeth)
the sight and sound of you fills the room,
you, too big for the space life granted.
My heart bursts
and I see
the bold splashes in bright brush strokes
your gifts on my wall.
One tough guy still,
yet ever in motion.
. . .
My morning, now mourning a little bit, too
an empty pizza plate off the coffee table
hold the crumbs in my palm
at the end of arms that hug tight
the pillows you cast on the floor
to make room, every time.
My heart swells
for the 8-pound, 6-ounce baby boy
three weeks early to this life.
Now a 220-pound, hulking, too-quick-to-bruise brute
who sits in his chair and cradles my tomorrows.