The I Chromosome
Seth Braverman, a Poet
Rocky Mountain National Park
the father’s voice: did you see it? at the beach, did you see what I took you to see?
the son’s eyes fill with water.
as surely as we get the Y chromosome from our fathers, so we also get the I chromosome from our fathers, or, rather, the eye chromosome. it is through our fathers we are given the gift of sight, and in so seeing, our own identity, our I, is formed. they are given then the task of teaching us how to see, to show us many great and baffling things with which to learn to look. they take us to discover the ocean or a sunrise, so beautiful that we go dumb and nearly blind. and when we do regain our speech, we simply say, “help me to see,” realizing all we’ve yet to learn, that endless sea. and sight still baffles our fathers, or they are no longer fit to teach. or they are dead or dying. if that time comes, as for some it surely will, it is we who must then take our fathers by their age-ed, hardened hands to discover, once again, the mysteries of light in the hush before dawn.