A week to the day after Ezra died, I awoke at 6am from a fitful sleep and wrote this poem. I read it at the last two nights of shiva, and at his funeral.
To my dear son Ezra.
For nearly eight months my belly was your home;
Our little “E” as you were known;
Your full name a secret to all but us;
We planned to announce your birth with such great fuss.
Your daddy and I took such pride;
As my body swelled and grew so wide.
Each night daddy rubbed my feet;
As we dreamed of the day when we would meet.
Our dear son Ezra.
As the weeks progressed, you made quite a din;
With kicks, punches and stretches from within.
Your daddy and I watched my stomach ripple and move;
It was just your way of showing you have groove.
Do you remember the time you kicked Daddy in the head?
He had leaned close to my belly to see if you’d heard what he said.
Thump! You got him in the ear;
It was one of those moments we both hold dear.
A memory of our dear son Ezra.
We’d dream and dream of what the future would hold;
Expecting the mark you’d leave on the world would be bold.
Columbia or Harvard Class of 2031?
We’d lie to each other about not caring which one.
Ezra Malik Katz Love -- such a great big name;
Because we anticipated accomplishments and fame.
How could a ‘helping king’ not be a social justice leader?
We never imagined you wouldn’t be here…
My dear son Ezra.
So now as we recite the Kaddish in your memory each night;
The words of the prayer stick in my throat so tight.
How many times have I said this prayer for the dead?
But I just cannot stand the prayer being read.
Ezra, I never expected to say Kaddish for you;
I just want you here to hold and rock and coo.
Daddy and I just want you know;
That we miss you terribly and love you so.
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