Coming home from the women-only bar, I go into my son's room. He sleeps—fine, freckled face thrown back, the scarlet lining of his mouth shadowy and fragrant, his small teeth glowing dull and milky in the dark, opal eyelids quivering like insect wings, his hands closed in the middle of the night. Let there be enough room for this life: the head, lips, throat, wrists, hips, penis, knees, feet. Let no part go unpraised. Into any new world we enter, let us take this man.
“Son” from The Dead and the Living by Sharon Olds. Copyright © 1983 by Sharon Olds. Originally published by Alfred A. Knopf. Used with the permission of the poet.
This poem was originally read in the On Being episode “Odes to the *****.”