Alexander’s never known you and yet
he swears he loves you. Vows to follow
in your footsteps – you who never shared
those fleeting baby days. Only his name.
You, who never bathed him in the sink
or buried your cheeks in the talc-powdered
folds of his dimpled chin, wept at the gate
on his first day at school and when he left
for Uni, thought the world would end.
His hair brown, his eyes blue, by the way.
I’ve grown frazzled at the edges, unlike you
who never age, looking out from that silvered
frame. Hard to take, us not growing old, side
by side. That cocky smile of yours mocks me,
says, “See you next Spring,” as does that uniform –
steel-shanked boots that walked away. You who
shall ever bask in the summer of your youth,
would do well to remember times change.
If you love him, show him a different road
and not the one you chose, for all our sakes.