The Light In My Arms

by Brittany Newmark

He was so light in my arms,  Levi Aron

 Just to be exact, the words I crossed out were “little” and, “Leiby,” his name.

Cute, cute kid and polite too.  Maybe lonely.


Instead I just said him.  I thought using the word “little” wasn't so nice, I mean he was little for his age but so was I back then, so I know what that felt like and how kids can be.   And I remember I hated it when people pointed it out or when they said the teams and some kid would yell, Levi can't play first base, he's too little, even though I was older than them. 


They said, just write down what happened, say what you told us.  Exactly.  The ugly one added.  Like he is going to get a promotion on this, on me.  Everybody out for themselves, so what's new.


I pretty much did, on the yellow legal pad they gave me.

And I said at the end that I was sorry for any hurt I might have caused, that's the truth too.  It's there, the last sentence.


Here, I don't have TV here and they are not talking to me. I don't ask. One thing, I don't care if I am famous.  It's not that.


 I eat alone at a metal table bolted to the floor that has small stools welded on to it like a steel octopus.  And constant animal sounds all night long, hissing, growls, grunts.  Can't sleep for too long in here. Howling.


I don't know what they are saying but I know a lot of it must be wrong.  You would think they would want to get it right—like it is their job.  Isn't it?  People don't do their jobs anymore.  I've seen enough TV (I'm a bit of a TV freak) to know that, and channel 7-- the worst for wrong.  Can't get anything right because they just want to be totally sleazy, that's what makes people watch these days, that's what the world has come to. 


I am not sleazy.  I hate sleazy.  When I do Kareokee it is only the nice and clean stuff, The Carpenters, they were so nice. Michael Jackson too.


I left some stuff out, but wrote down the important stuff.  I did not try to lie or anything.  I mean like that would be wrong.  You can't get away with that kind of stuff.  I mean I am not like some  kind of professional kill kid guy.


Its not like they think.  I went to pay a bill.  That's all.  I owed the money and needed to get another appointment so I figured I better pay something from what I owed before.  The kid was looking for the Judaica store.  Eielers is up on 52th and 13th Ave,


They asked.  Expecting, I don't what. 

I don't know about other kids that went missing.  I didn't know anything about him.  I don't swing that way.


Except he did not have a TV.  Yea the Rabbis here don't hold with TV, all the violence, all the sex.  He sure liked the TV.  I mean he really liked it and I let him have all the remotes.  I told him though, not to watch something that could scare him.


I asked him his name and here's the kicker, Leiby. It means lion. 

You know what?  I said mine is Levi, how do you do.

That means to accompany—like in the root of the word, it's got that meaning. 

As in levayah, funeral in Hebrew.  Does that only mean something to me?  It just about blew my mind I was like yeah this is the kid for me, destined for me.   I mean is that weird, or what?