He cries out at night. I take his hand;
we fall asleep.
When I wake him with a kiss on his forehead
and a kiss on his lips, sometimes he smiles.
    Is this not love?

He sits in the sunny window.
Beyond the glass the birds
flutter at the bird bath, but he does not notice.
My chest is weighed down with loss.
    Is this not love?

We no longer try to walk him up and down.
He will fade and tire.
I am willing to let him go.
But for now I hold him safe and quiet.
    Is this not love?

I tell him I love him but the words
fall into an empty space
where there is no longer a way to say

Lari Smith