The unfeathering of the nest as my son leaves for college


The unfeathering of the nest as my son leaves for college

By Emily Franklin
(this appeared in Motherwell)

The almost-18-year-old removes a handmade sign from his bedroom wall.

“Should I keep it?” I look at the space where the sign has hung for the past three years, his last name and #13 in painted letters. Next to that space are other blanks—the Catalan independence flag space from his summer in Spain, the schooner sketch from his deckhand job.

“Take it with you or chuck it—or keep it here,” I say. “Those are the choices.” He slumps down on his bed, unsure.

“What about the soccer shirt?” He carefully unpins it, then apologizes for the holes left in the wall. “Look—it’s like I made constellations in the plaster.”

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