Travelers Welcome

Travelers Welcome

Thursday, July 24, 2014


by April Salzano

Rain is washing earth with something
like pity falling
on my son’s rusty bicycle, training
wheels and all. He is almost nine. Autistic.
July is screaming, summer
is almost over, and third grade is coming
with its threat of tantrums and more
1:1 instruction.
The chicken coup does not have any
chickens and the fresh coat of paint will run
brown into green
grass. Thoughts intrude on my visual.
My friend’s son is going to die,
tubular sclerosis will claim his brain and all
I want to know is will there be a secret
sense of relief buried
in the sorrow, a tiny crack in the loss?
I wonder if night will breathe gratefulness
into lungs collapsed from mourning,
because she does not have to watch anymore
deterioration that lasted decades and spoke
words that no mother wants to hear
in the negative, words like hope
and cure, words like function and love.
And love and love and love.


  1. I appreciate this poem on two levels--as a poem and as a reminder to me as the grandfather of two autistic children what it must be like to be the parent of child or children with this unforgiving illness. At times, hope for a cure is all that one has and all that one can pray for.
    As a grandparent, you simply don't know what to say or how to plan for the future that is unknown.