top of page

“Echo of Boy” by Darlene Young

My son hunches into the storm in his oversized coat to collect fast offerings, a two-hour route …..because the other mother’s sons stay in when it’s cold. …..He is mine. ………..His wrists

out-hang his sleeves. His hair squirms out of his well-slicked part, and he is mine. He’s out there …..in the snow and I can’t settle. Thirteen years old; thirteen, …..the way he slides a little to the right of us on the Sunday pew, ……….like someone has hit “tab” on the keyboard, though still ……….he’ll let me pull him back to drape my arm around ……….those slumping shoulders. ……………Shadow of boy.

It’s snowing and he is fine out there. He’s fine. At home he sprawls on the couch behind those heavy eyes. Outline of boy. Echo of boy. I tell it to him straight: “The reward for showing up,” I say, “is that you’re the first one they call …..next time. Find a way to be proud of that.” He looks …..away. Should I apologize for this burden of duty I’ve bred ……….into him, for the fact that from here on out ……….he’ll never be able to leave a ward party ………..without putting away chairs? Welcome ………..to Mormon guilt, my son. Welcome to the wilderness. Sometimes a suit is a front bumper, silver plating, deadweight.                         Sometimes it is wings.

Those heavy-lidded eyes. Let there be a man …..behind there. The still-narrow shoulders, crooked ……….tie. Does he slump to parenthesize the space ……………he’ll leave when he’s gone? Look ………………..forward, son. Look forward, ………………..mother. On the horizon ……………………..in the chalky dusk: ……………………………contrail of boy.

1 view0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

2015 Mormon Lit Blitz Winner

Declaring a winner in a literary contest is silly in many ways. As the ballots and comments make clear, different pieces resonated with readers for different reasons–a piece might resonate with you be

Lit Blitz Voting Instructions

We have enjoyed all twelve finalists. But we only have one Grand Prize. Help us decide which piece wins this year’s Lit Blitz by emailing a ranking of your four favorite pieces to everydaymormonwriter

“Mother” by Merrijane Rice

You haven’t left yet, but when you do I’ll remind the children how you made sandwiches on warm wheat bread, stocked popsicles in your outdoor freezer, filled closets with homemade quilts. I’ll te

Comments


bottom of page