I come home and the house is quiet. My son Eli looks different. The noises are gone. The non stop talking that usually fills the house is gone. The edge, the staccato everything, the aggressive dynamics are absent. He has a fever. He sits at the table.
Can you come into my room? I want you to hear this song. It's number 11.
I sit on the floor and he falls on the bed. The illness has taken away all of these things that are so evident and on the surface every day. The fever has equalized us.
The music fills the room, its dark, we both whisper the lyrics. We are both 19 right now. No child no parent. Big anthemic album, power chords and choruses, we both take it in. Our eyes never meet...we never glance over to see if it's all right, if it's cool. We are both in the music...the appreciation is instinctual, it really is the equalizer here.
I can't make out some of the lyrics but look them up after he falls asleep, looking for clues or at least a passage for my project. I find one but I'm too embarrased to share it: it's too adolescent, too easy to exploit. Giving the moment the respect it deserves, I just let it go.