Best Friend Forever by Erica Sternin

3723160973_a16fbd5a95_o Do not fear me! I love you more than life itself;
The moment your tiny smegma-smeared chest lifted
With your first cry, I have been at your side; I have walked with you, your best friend forever.
Your shining eyes and upraised arms, you ran through a glittering hail of droplets
Your laughter rose like a geyser, arms above your head: summer, grass and sprinklers.
Unbearably sweet to me, like honey, like flowers, like fresh mown hay.
Glittering, my finger-bones raised also, I too ran through the sprinklers.
I’ve pulled your plow and planted your furrow, I’ve savored your desires:
I love the way you lick honey off the spoon,
The way when you are wet you smell like lilies, the way you
Somersault down the freshly mown hillsides, shrieking with joy.
I’ve stood behind your bent shoulders when you were sick from chemo,
I’ve cradled your bony chest after surgery. I’ve lain my long, smooth ulna comfortingly alongside your ribs,
When you cried in despair and fear.

I beg you, fear not!
I love you best, I always have.
I have danced every step of life with you!
And when my time comes, I will carry you tenderly,
My love, my best friend, the way you have carried me.


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