I lie in the room my second son used, the one he made his own, at least for a while, but long enough for an echo of his presence to linger long after he’d gone. His own little family nestled there, warm and happy though its comforts were few, but he never seemed to miss what he didn’t have, always happy with what he did, from the tiniest things drawing joy. I remember him happily exclaiming, “a box, a box”, one happy Christmas when he was just a tiny boy, a prank gone wonderfully awry.
I lie in the room which through his gentle presence became the touch of a once and perhaps future home and though home dwells within him, wherever he goes, a shadow of it remains; I can almost hear the echoes of his voice and if they’re but the sounds imagination makes, I hear them all the same, and I sense the memory of a smile lite on my face, a trace of what seems like a tear but can’t be, I don’t cry, seems to gather at the corner of my eyes, and stroke my cheek.
While he was there all my sons somehow accompanied him, as if when they slept their souls came to the room to join him, the way the three of them would sleep together alternating rooms when they were little, and I shared their presence, and was comforted by them and it didn’t seem as though they were quite so far away; … but they are. But for that room the apartment seems a lonely place, empty despite all the pretty things I keep. So I visit that room, and listen, and nap there hoping to share a passing dream.
But then, …. I start to miss them all again.
© Guillermo Calvo Mahé; Manizales, 2017; all rights reserved