To My Son Christopher, On The Occasion Of The Birth Of His First Son, Elliott

He is the first son

Of the first son

Of the first son

Of the first son


The oldest son

Of the oldest son

Of the oldest son

Of the oldest son


Your son extends beyond you,

Into the future,

And behind you,

Into the past.

He will be the first son of the first son of the first son of the first son,

But he will be one.

Not many.

Though he be connected, he will not be them.

But without them, he would not be.

He will not be them,

And he will not be you.

He will be he,

And claim his place in the world.


In time,

It is possible,

He will in turn meet his first son.

Another connected one.


Like a tiny little thief I took the way that you walk,
Copied bits of your style,
Took the way that you talk,
Took every little bit that my tiny heart could steal,
But it took more than forty years till I could manage to feel,
What you took from me,

At only nine years old well what was a boy to do,
You pulled the rug from under,
I tried to build a bridge to you,
With a box under your arm you shook my hand and said goodbye,
Never once looked back to see me as I lay there and cry,
You did not want to see,

What did that box have in it, cuz I never got to know,
The things that you took with you,
On that day you chose to go,
It must have been filled with moments we’d never get to share,
And whatever mask you used to help show you never care,
And my security,

Well I’ve a box inside me, and it’s been there since that day,
Tried many times to open it,
But then locked it back away,
Every once in a while I could take a peek inside,
But now I’ve found the keys to rip the damned lid open wide,
And I’m fucking angry!

Angry for abandonment and angry that you lied,
Angry for the way things went,
And that you never even tried,
Angry for the holes you left for me to fill myself,
Angry cuz your feelings are still locked upon some shelf,
Angry for the fact I never got what I deserved,
Childhood was torn from me, I was poorly served,
Angry cuz my hunger for you kept my feelings caged,
When the simple truth is long ago I should have been enraged,
Angry that my longing interfered and that I let it,
Angry because forty years on you still don’t fucking get it,
I’m Angry!