View Full Version : Moving poem on being a parent of a child with unique needs

08-04-14, 09:15 AM
From the New Yorker last month, an article about a poet reviewing the life of his son (who passed away). The son was diagnosed with pervasive Development Disorder-Not otherwise Specified. Different from ADD/ADHD, but the poet's words are so wonderful in capturing what it's like to try to help a child with issues. The excerpt below is specifically about worrying.

Finding the Words
In a book-length elegy, the poet Edward Hirsch confronts the loss of his son.

Excerpt from article, from section of the poem called "Gabriel":

The evening with its lamps burning
The night with its head in its hands
The early morning

I look back at the worried parents
Wandering through the house
What are we going to do

The evening of the clinical
The night of the psychological
The morning facedown in the pillow

The experts can handle him
The experts have no idea
How to handle him

There are enigmas in darkness
There are mysteries
Sent out without searchlights
The stars are hiding tonight

The moon is cold and stony
Behind the clouds
Nights without seeing
Mornings of the long view
Itís not a sprint but a marathon

Whatever we can do
We must do
Every morningís resolve
But sometimes we suspected
He was being punished
For something obscure we had done

I would never abandon the puzzle
Sleeping in the next room
But I could not solve it.