The Only Son by Elizabeth Glixman

Murmurs of autumn fill the mute August air.
Sighing memories crowd round the outdoor floodlights.
Pictures of toys long broken, of chubby faces smirking,
and being adored, are dancing in the moonlight.
Inside the walls wounded people walk.
Limping in fog.
Time has captured them and will not let go.
Stuck, locked in a room slowly perishing, they
crackle leaves turning red, orange, brown.
Holding their crispness, they hold hands. Then fade
Float and crumble.

Fade, the word is a branch drifting.
Lazy hot down a stream,
or it is swift, dark like death in rapids?
No one knows when the last moment dissolves
In muddy luster
drags us from warmth.
Ripened hope

In the damp air will you return to us?
What happiness, what anger is buoyant in your mind?
When you were young people rented you for parties
an intense infectious joy lived in your lilting look.
It was not your chubby baby pinch cheeks,
Not even that you said coat with an old man’s Yiddish accent.
It was your spirit of God and light, a born entertainer,
a born joy giver at five satisfying creation.

Four years have passed. Not ten or twenty.
No one does anything except live each day.
I push the autumn chill away wrapping myself in cellophane.
Mother keeps closer to herself.
Father mows the lawn over and over again
making the green coat stay.
Autumn is in the air. Lost murmurs are sharp,
Clear like razors that cut the skin.

You can piece the dream together.
Come home. Bring life with you.
We will rent you to play music.
To shine up the attic stairs.
Through the basement

@2006 E. P. Glixman

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