His dry lips touch mine. He murmurs the story
about a lost shadow, a clock and crocodile.
He points to the ceiling, traces the sticker stars:
this star his, that star mine. I tell him last kiss.
Tonight, stone-carved newsmen stand in front of a school.
Every mother with a child in the bathtub or a child eating
leftover pizza feels the bang: a child’s cold bed,
a child’s folded pajamas, a child’s dry toothbrush.
Lock my love in your brain, I whisper. My son turns
an invisible key near his ear. He tongues click click.
I hear a rhythm sounding out from his bedroom:
not breath or heart, like God only more real,
more flesh, the sound of us all tumbling
toward some precipice together, the mothers,
the shooters, and all our sleeping children.