It was Monday, pre-dinner. Carrie prepped food, Leesa sat waiting, and me: I sought music. You think I’m manic with the car radio? Catch me on Pandora!

Searching song, from Phil Ochs to Phillip Sousa, I stumbled on the perfect tune for the interim time. Volume up, it was the Barry Sisters belting “Hava Nagila”.

I rose quickly, with passion, beginning to dance. “Oh, brother,” moaned Leesa; it was a reasonable response. Then her mother looked up, eyes shining.

“Call Max,” she said.

We don’t talk about it often, unless I want. She knows I miss my kids —tells me she senses when I’m thinking of them, sometimes by refrains I play.


I just don’t like they’re being out-of-town.

‘ Last time I saw The Prince it was January. We were circling the coffee table in a clock-wise Hora— Max Parker Plus Six— in what I gather was for Carrie too a Kodak Moment.

I miss him.

Lucy’s younger, of course. A year and a half now… coming in to her own. With Stace having business in Ohio, I see her little one more— or so it seems. Prime time, though, is splintered at best. My Rooney has friends here, and another parent. So, with Lucy too, it’s the old Marx Brothers’ lyric: “Hello, I must be going”.

I miss her.

It’s understandable, of course. I’ve held them and hugged them and kissed them and diapered them. I’ve watched them sleep, heard them cry, and made them laugh.

I’ve smelled them.

There’s a picture on my mantle of two others. She’s three; he’s not two.

I kissed her forehead once in ’11, but he was sound asleep. Miss them both.

I’ve never held them or hugged them.
Or kissed them.
Or diapered them.

Or watched them sleep or heard them cry or made them laugh.

But I miss them.

It’s a funny thing, when you think of it: I never glimpse at Hailey. Can’t view Matthew in his crib. But I see they miss me—miss having their grandpa.

And their grandma. And aunts. And uncles. And cousins.

We see that.

A funnier thing, yes….that others, those gifted by their lines of sight, are blind.

I guess people see what they want to see. That’s all.

And the children, when they grow up: they see it all.

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