Today, he would have been 28.
While doing some cleaning and reorganizing
I found a couple of his long-sleeved t-shirts
and held them to my face,
searching for his scent.
It was not there.
And I came across a pair of plaid shorts,
plaid like a country kitchen table cloth.
I smiled and took them from the drawer
to hang in my closet,
a tangible reminder of my grief
and life too soon gone.
Today, I'd get myself to the store
and I'd buy the cheesecake and the Pepsi
(as I did on that day).
Today, I wear my invisible badge
invisible in that
it's not a badge everyone can see-
it is a badge that some do not want to see.
But for all who do see,
for those who speak words of kindness over me,
and sit with me,
even after all this time,
I am ever grateful.
For you who do not have to wear
who have not been thrown unwillingly and with no gentleness
into this rough club,
whose sons and daughters still walk this earth,
I exhort you to
savor their days.
Do not take lightly the privilege of witnessing the unfolding
of their lives,
for there are no guarantees,
even to the young.