Naja Marie Aidt’s When Death Takes Something from You Give It Back is an account of the first few years after her twenty-five-year-old son Carl died in a tragic accident. The excerpt below is addressed to him.
My first book, a poetry collection, was published in 1991. I wrote it when you were a baby. I wrote it as I nursed you, as I rocked you, as I got to know you, as you learned to crawl and walk. There’s a poem in the book in which I describe a dream I had when you were a year old. A dream about you. In this poem:
and the dream will not leave me
my son is about to drown
and I can’t save him
his brand-new self
soft as a bear’s snout
sinks in the clear water