The way you’ve started asking if I’ve slept well—if I “Sleep good, daddy?”—even while my eyes are red, as I slump through the bathroom hardly awake and hardly verbal;
The way you ask, at the oddest times, if I’m happy, if your mother is happy, with that song in your voice that regardless of our feelings turn us to joy;
The way you roll your eyes as you grin and ask for something by not asking for it but saying something about it, and when we don’t cooperate, you actually ask for it;
The way you say “No, not today” when asked if you’d like to take a phone call from some relative;
The way you jump up and down and say, “Cookieeeees” in the aisle at Trader Joes until the store worker joins and says that he feels exactly that way too;
The way you introduce yourself to people on the street, like a little politician, and how a few of them have peeled off a dollar or a quarter the way they did when I was boy;
The way you knock your guitar as you play it at home or at church, becoming a maestro, and building the world around you by making something beautiful;
These ways are yours, and they are, like you, a great gift to me and your mother.