We Are a Mystery of Becoming

We Are a Mystery of Becoming
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(for Carter)

We are a mystery of becoming:
obstinate riping of time;
capricious tango of biomolecules;
the fervent cleavings of a zygote,
fated migrations in gastrulas,
urge toward organogenesis;
discharged into the world
a vague mass of fluid, flesh and bone.

Here you are, my lovely boy —
four years and a bundle of gumption,
spurting delirious giggles as you splatter,
squirt water from the plastic ball,
and we exchange catapults of suds.
Today, with a simple singing machine
you uncloseted a room of Lionel Ritchie fans.
As you crooned the lyrics to his masterpieces,
furrowed concentration on your brow,
I surmised you fathom their meaning
no less than I or the crowd
of giddy quadragenerians.

I witness how your mothers love you –
bespoken in each exhalation and gesture.

It’s an act of noblest art:
flawed beings contriving one greater,
summoning their most perfect selves to guide you,
heaping affection upon you like
provision for vicissitudes unseen,
imbue you with daring and sensitivity,
abundance and generosity,
modesty and assurance;
assiduously, precluding
their failings from transference.

You will not remain as today
but reatomize over sumless cycles —
denature, reform and flourish.
You’ll be kneaded by chance,
chiseled per circumstance,
coursed through spells without your control,
contend emotions insoluble,
falter through loss,
fall into love,
and verge upon unplumbed terrains
delighted, frightened, inspired —
improvisation your only constant.

Perhaps you’d always recall their devotion.
Perhaps you’d reposit this day when
the wonder of Lionel’s hits and a sudsy bath
comprise the greater balance of the world.

more by JUN HUA EA

Photograph by Jun Hua Ea

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