Taking No Credit

the second son
not a second coming
not molded in his brother’s image
still, made of the same stuff

similarities manifested as
innate kindness, a wellspring of equanimity
and fair-minded sensibility

yet, the differences are clear
he possesses, has always possessed
a quiet, unassuming confidence

age 6 a classmate comments
“that is a very small backpack!”
he quips, “i am a very small guy!”
just the facts, no embarrassment,
no rancor or apology in retort

the second son
a quiet force
unassuming, no broadcast
no need to tell you the details

solo performance at Carnegie, age 17
perfect AP test scores for classes not taken
requesting texts on calculus, physics, Bach
because he wants to know
and no, there is no test
no reason for the extra effort
he simply believes
reading a calculus text three times through
to be a reasonable use of time

i take no credit for this child
he has always been quietly self-assured
and immeasurably modest
and easy to love

this second son
not a second coming
just a quiet, lovely force

September 29, 2010

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