03
Oct
08

First Born

By Darren King [copyright 2008]

Your formal name
is derived from Old English.
But ever since you were born
we preferred its Irish form
meaning spirited;
which more suit
your personality as an infant,
especially as a toddler
and definitely as the
undaunted young man of ten
I drove to hockey on
winter Saturday mornings.
You are your mother
and your father both
when at their very best.
You have inherited
their eccentricities
which can make you
difficult to parent
and for other children
easy to admire.
And when Sage our cat
had to be put down,
you wanted to go with us,
to be there for him.
And if we had let you,
you would have stayed,
I know you would have.
But it was one of those times
(please forgive us)
when we tried not to forget
that you were still just a boy
when we were trying so much
to do the right thing for you,
when nothing else about that
sad, sad day felt right.
But let me say this –
when sorrow is overcome
by bravery
for someone you love,
it means you are too good
for this world of cabbages and kings,
which places you my son
among its saints.

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