To Philip’s Mother

You sent your son to college and

three weeks later

he is dead.

You helped him pack and laughed

about that night after the game and

when he looked at you

his young boy face

appeared.

He died with Greek letters across his chest

and like the tragedy

your boy died too soon.

Did you, like Hecuba,

cry from a mountaintop

or perhaps locked behind

your bathroom door?

Your breasts that nursed him

aching.

Your son’s classmates

gathered with candles and flowers,

the lights of the library

bright over their heads.

And from a hundred miles away a light is gone

from your home and from

your mother’s

heart.

And from a hundred miles away

I hold you in my heart,

my mother’s heart.

I don’t know you

but I have a

son.

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