My children are beautiful. They grow away
from me like a storm-cleaved tree and I am
dying. That’s the only conclusion I can draw.
It only sounds like a hackneyed melodrama
because it is. I cry openly when my son slips
onto his bicycle and spins into the world. We
used to ride together all these mornings. He
pedaled the trail-a-bike, chattering. My little
outboard motor. Then, his own. He exulted
in balance and the speed. It only accelerates,
just as folks say. The days are far too long
and the years flit quick as a whisper. My wife
just smiles and shakes her head at the softness
of this man who’s never held a separate heart-
beat in his body. She indulges no illusions.
There’s no escaping the echoing hallways in
the temple of cliché. There’s a reason it’s built
from ossified bone. That is what we become.
Leaving teeth, gold bands, and maybe one
incongruous strand of hair. But this is not
a rant about death. It’s too in love with life
leaving us, on a bicycle. Strangely tall now,
suddenly handsome, not once looking back.about the author