For My Sons, a Poem

by H. L. Nelson

In time, I will forget
how he said "smooshie" for "smoothie"
and "eyebrowns" for "eyebrows,"
how his upper lip dimpled when he laughed
in that uproarious, wild toddler way.
How he wheedled to be wrapped and rocked,
after a bath, even at age five,
his long calves uncovered by cloth.
How he teetered then between baby and boy,
how his hair still smelled of warm nursery.
But I will have this poem,
and I will have his shoulders, staunch,
ahead on the crumbling concrete,
my grandchild, his child, piggybacking,
grinning behind and beckoning.