The house is quiet tonight.  Lu is away at a yoga retreat and I’m thrilled for her.  Our friend Andrea–who was also our dula– is there with her and this is exactly what my beautiful wife and our wonderful friend both need.  Lu wanted me to come but even thinking about it kinda makes me chuckle, and I know it would her, too.  I would be this weird lumbering dude among a sea of graceful, effortless yogis.  I do other things to heal.

I love to read.  Finished a book tonight.  It was the first novel in many months and it felt good to just devour a book over the course of a few days.  My reading has been online everything and the NYTimes hardcopy every day for months now but I can feel a fiction phase coming back into my life.  I have four other novels lined up after this and I’m looking forward to all of them.  Books are my healing and my escape.  So is music.

This past weekend while hanging out, Lu and friends talked a lot about the music they had heard while growing up, that their parents had played.  Music was present in our house, but beyond a slightly maniacal focus on The Boss by mom, music wasn’t an overt presence.  What I remember most about growing up was cracking open the slightly smaller door of my father’s big dusty closet and rifling through his paperbacks.  It was the pantheon of sci-fi in yellowed and flimsy softback and I loved them all.  From Pern to Tolkien to Foundation’s Edge those books taught me ways to view the world that I cherish to this day.

I wonder what unknown gift I might have given to my son.  I wonder what he would have thought of the weird and wonderful collection of books I have gathered over the years.  I’ve moved these books across the country twice.  I need to have them with me.  Shelves lined with the spines of stories is my favorite way to fill a wall.

Maybe for him, instead, it would have been an old PC, lined with images and songs from when his parents were young and funny looking. It is certain that at some point he would hate our music, and then maybe start to love it someday.

I see Silas in so many ages of life.  I wonder about them all.  Lu’s focus is on what would have been happening right now, how she would have juggled the shopping and the baby and our schedules and all of that.  I feel that sometimes, especially on a night like tonight.  But most of the time I see Silas at 10, at 20, at 35 himself wondering about his seventy year old father.

And that is my new pain.  The absence of kin.  My brothers and my father and uncles and my nephew Oren, we are of a kind. I wanted Silas added to that mix.  I wanted him as my son so that I could be as good a father as my father has always been, and I could hide for him little treasures like boxes of books and musty old mp3s that would somehow slowly bring him to place where the beauty of the world was evident and obvious.  A view that we could share together as we compared tastes and opinions and taught each other about the world.

I want that beautiful world to still exist somehow, but right now that beauty is hard to find.  I don’t trust it much anymore, but a few instants have shown through.  Music on Tuesday night was incredible.  Tonight, to be lost in the pages of story unfolding between my thumbs was such a relief.  I hope that Lu finds joy and peace in her practice this weekend.

The deep silence of the house got to me because I wished so hard for the wailing cry of my newborn son, but first tears and then more of the story helped get me through the quiet.

I’m gonna give this book to dad next.  I know he’d like it. I know exactly the type of books he likes.