I knew already Aes was coming forth
having made sure that he and Mean join
my homage to the start of Holy Week
and I was not surprised that they did come.
What was surprising was that, used to stay
outside the church, Aes chose to sit with me.
I did not mind that he could not, like me,
stand for the honoring because his wound
still ached. Because he knelt if that caused pain
and his humility showed in my eyes.
Papa Zaling was coming forth I gave
the space in our pew to him and Aes
to him and all the others who did not
yet know my son from Adam but his sins.
And I made sure Susan, when I pass by
her seat, knew him as well before Noel
gave us a host each and soon afterwards
the sign that all of us there were from dust.
Aes made me grin after the Mass when he
showed me the breakfast-at-McDonald’s bread
his mother bid in lieu of her longing
to be with us. Happily we walked while
trading jokes about the introductions
made before the congregation, his smile
was like infection it prevailed until
he told me he was going next to see
a missed friend of a priest for company
and when he did I gave them privacy.
ABRAHAM DE LA TORRE