Sunday, June 24, 2007

Dear Readers,

I am 99% sure that this little piece will conclude the text of In Memory of Ben.


My father calls me “son,” more often than he does by my name, and because

I am my father's son, I too adopted the same usage with respect to my boys. Kimberly, my

daughter, I call Kimuschkele, Kimmy, Kimmy Babe, Sweetheart, Sweety, Sugar … you get the

idea. The list is as saccharine as it is lengthy.

I always enjoyed Ben’s name. When he was little, people called him by the

diminutive “Benji.” There was always something so adult about “Benjamin” or

“Ben”. As a matter of fact, even as a young adult of twenty-two years, 6’ 2” in height and around

250 pounds, many still called him “Benji,”-as did I-but it became my habit to call him “son” or

as a variant "sonny boy."

One evening before bedtime, he mustn’t have been more than five years old, we discussed

"ornithology"[1], of all things:


“Yes, Sonny Boy,” I quickly responded.

“How come the birds don’t fall out of the sky?” he asked brilliantly, but not without a partly

suppressed yawn.

“D’ya feel the wind on your face when you're outside, son? I probed.

“It feels good Dad,” he answered, cheerfully following along.

“The wind, Son, is God’s breath that he blows, but we call it

the ‘wind.’

“Ooookay,” he responded, appearing somewhat quizzical, “but Daddy, remember the birds?” he

dutifully reminded me.

“Yes, Son, when God wants to, He blows his breath,” I said.

“Like this, Dad?” he queried, inflating his cheeks and blowing.

“Yes, Ben, just like that, but when God blows his breath, it

catches under the wings of the birds and lifts them up,” I


“Ooooh,” he perplexedly replied, scratching his head

but clearly intrigued by the answer.

Alan D. Busch

[1] The scientific study of birds; avian science.

1 comment:

Ashleen said...

I guess it's time, however, I'll miss reading your thoughts...