Blind Strike

{February 26, 2008}   To my Brother

You are the greatest gift to me.

Did you know this?

How I secretly longed for a brother, and then you came?

And the world was so simple then, for me too, I remember. I cried more when my first kitten died than I did when I lost my friend two months ago. My friend is gone. My kitten is gone. Ryan, my innocence is gone, and it is that to which you cling so desperately. 

I know you, I know why. You were the most adorable baby in your overalls with wide blue eyes. You were the loud-laughing carefree young boy who cautioned himself, “Always remember  to have fun,” as if you knew what was coming.

You did know. We all know. We see it in our parents’ faces, our grandmother’s wilted eyes. Loss is everywhere, my brother. Unless we die together, a day will come when I lose you, or you lose me.

It has not been easy watching you grow and struggle, healthy as I know it to be. I have tried to tend you with love and attention, though it never seems enough. I don’t want you to feel alone, though it is inevitable. I have never felt I spend enough time with you.

Do you remember when I scared you? The night you were opening the garage door and you cried and cried. I’m so sorry. It was a mean thing to do. You have never been mean that I know of. You carry so much purity forward, even as you lose what can’t be kept.

And there are gains, Ryan. There is also hope. She may not be in your arms right now, but you have brooked the peace to be had in helplessness. You have done all you could, your best, to bring her to you.

These are the pains that bind us to the page. In this family there are gifts, my brother. And we reach an age when we cannot live without their constant use.

Your writing is beautiful.

Your path is your own.

You will always have my love.


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