Wednesday, February 13, 2013
I took the earlier train to Philadelphia yesterday, bounded down the stairwell, and saw, at the end of the ramp, a tall, black-haired young man, more beautiful than any—my son. We'd agreed to take a walk together ahead of my teaching hour.
And so we made our way—wove up Market, notched south, cut through the Drexel campus, and found ourselves here, above this new sports complex with its lovely panoramic view of the city. Our city. We share that now. We declare it. Our city.
Some people say my son's eyes are my eyes. Some people say it's in the brow. Some people say he writes and you write and therefore.... But I know that my kid is my kid because when we walk together anywhere we are happy. The same small things delight us. The same nothing is something. My little stories matter to him, and his matter hugely to me, and when we stop at last for lunch along 40th Street, an even greater calm settles in.
"It's such a great campus," he said, as he left me at the door of my building. "It's so clear why you love it here." He had met one of my students, said how nice he seemed. He had walked into one of my favorite Penn places, said, "Yes. It's beautiful. I see."
I see, too. But I always see better with him.