When Do The Tears Begin?~

Is it when you feel life inside you?
Or when your hormones are rushing around inside,
Searching for their place to settle.
Surely, when that final push brings life
And that first cry of joy is heard, “I’m here Mom!”

Those inquisitive eyes looking into your soul,
An understanding that your love will be unconditional
And Forever.

Forever never lets you forget that promise made,
Tugging at you each and every day
To spend one moment thinking about him
Thinking about that baby, who is now man.

The closeness first shared, came back on Saturday night.
As he walked along that corridor towards you, it was though he was being reborn.
He came through that open door to a cascade of applause and noise, and into your arms.
The arms that first held him 22 years ago, did so again.
And there were those same tears.
This time though, he sobbed from within his soul,
His body heaving, wrenching your heart to bursting point.

You held him so tight, that you squeezed out those last few moments he had just experienced.
Oh how clear they are.
Skating off the ice for the last time.
Red rimmed eyes underneath his helmet, pushed a little further down
So that other’s may not notice.
You saw him remove that beloved jersey,
Sit a little longer in that locker room, as his senior brothers’ gathered themselves for their own journey down that corridor.

Packing his bag for the last time
How he gently wiped his streaming tears off that green helmet,
He proudly wore for four years.

His love and passion for this game always visible in those beautiful dark brown eyes.
The same eyes, which melt your heart when he smiles!

Looking at that locker room door,
A sanctuary since he was six, it now served notice that a new life waited outside.

The flood of emotions mixed together into a series of conjoined memories.

A celebration of sixteen years spent together;
Early mornings, Late evenings
New equipment, old equipment
Quiet rides, Loud and funny rides,
Homework rides,
Playstation rides, Video and DVD rides,
iPod rides, Sleepy rides,
But always that “smell” from the equipment rides!

As you hold his head in your hands and look into his eyes,
Counting each of his tears as a blessing.
And your lasting wish is that one day,
He will hold his own child the same way,
And be overwhelmed with the LOVE that you felt
At that very moment.

©Neil Chatterton 2011

4 thoughts on “When Do The Tears Begin? by Neil Chatterton

  1. Poignant and not maudlin, full of wonderful details that make this poem an experience full of emotion. What a joy to read about the bond between father and son! The line from Wordsworth, “The child is father to the man” comes to mind as the cycle of life plays out in a rare and precious connection between father and son. What a treasure , Neil!

  2. SUPERB!! I had posted this comment which was enough but this idiot of a computer asked me to go back and add some more words!Oh, now the machines are really controlling our emotions too!

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