Before kids

His life began as an idea of something more than
afternoons in Empire Café on Westheimer
long copies of the Houston Press
a huge cake slice for desert
time for thinking.
I had quiet days then
time to notice the details of other people’s
dress, intonation, gestures.

Soon the thought of possibility -
could we do it? really be parents?
seeped into our conversations
It seemed so outlandish
as I moved to the bathroom with no concern
for anyone, leaving my adult kin alone and safe
at his sandwich, his copy of the Iliad open
my drink unspilled when I returned.

But once that seed had formed
it was as gripping as the gradual desire to marry,
buy a house, live in one town, be a grown up.

And so one day my days were no longer quiet
my thoughts no longer free
my bathroom trips no longer alone
and the skin of home no longer hushed.


I know it is a week late, but Happy 9th Birthday my son.


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