A summer week on the beach with our family. \n\nI spent hours with you in the waves, just beyond [[the break|The Break]]. \n\nWe talked about the [[days ahead|Days Ahead]] while the days behind sat heavy on your shoulders.
Years ago, before I knew what [[codependence|Codependence]] meant.\n\nBack then, you admired me. All of my favorites were yours. \n\nNow I wish you had been a little bit more [[like me|Like Me]]. \n\nIt's hard, knowing I left you to [[fend for yourself|Battles]]. Moved out of the apartment we shared, and then across the country, to give [[you|You]] room to grow.\n\nSo far away, but I didn't feel it until [[today|Today]].
Your goodbye.\n\n[[Return|Last Night]]
You were so brave. I'll never know the battles you fought.\n\n[[Return|Years Ago]]
Remember when I wrote these poems for you? This is the first poem I ever wrote (and it shows):\n\nDear Ryan,\n\nHow are things?\nNot so good here,\nbut don’t be afraid.\nI just miss the\njourneys through the woods\nwith fake stick swords and\nbrown bag lunches by Mom.\n\nOur boyhood\nseems so close\nsometimes.\nSled trains down\nthe crooked hill,\nnever hit a tree.\nWe just glided softly to a stop,\nlaughing and ready to go again.\n\nI wish I could go again.\n\nGrow up strong and\nwatch out for trees.\n\nLove,\nTravis\n\nAnd this one, after we were in that [[accident|Accident]] together?\n\ncrash\nand we are drowning in air\n\nOur voices and the warm rubber\non the road are silent now.\n\nOver origami metal I see:\ndrops of rain,\nflashing lights,\nand the end of\nmy brother’s childhood.\nHe whispers, “I can’t breathe,”\nand big brother says it will be okay.\nBut it won’t.\n\nHis future dreams will overflow\nwith failed double yellow lines.\n\nI can feel the belt and wheel\ntattooed on my chest but\nhis blood is drawing lines\ndown broken glass.\nThe violence of breath\nis all I hear.\nI want to take his fear away.\n\nThe paramedic’s name is Bill\nwhich he asks us to remember\nas he pries open the door.\nMy brother jokes, “Okay, John.”\nand I can’t believe I can laugh.\n\n[[Return|Today]]\n\n\n\n
I wish I had picked up the phone when you called [[yesterday|Yesterday]].
Today I got up early, brewed a pot of coffee, and started to really [[write|Writing]] for the first time in years. \n\nThen the phone rang. They found you outside in the cold. So alone. \n\nEach time you ran away before, I worried myself sick, but not [[last night|Last Night]].
Last night you you tried to call me on [[Mom's phone|Phone]] before leaving the house for the last time.\n\nI talked to you just [[a week ago|A Week Ago]].
Yours was lost and mine was silent. I would have picked up.\n\n[[Return|Yesterday]]
Wish I had said so many things. Drop everything and come tomorrow. I'll take care of you. I can help. I want to talk to you again. I love you.\n\n[[Return|A Week Ago]]
I wish you were in this photograph.\n\n<html><img src="car wreck.jpg"></html>\n\n[[Return|Today]]
A trip to visit me in California. You'd never been. I hope it wasn't too much.\n\n<html><img src="cardcover.jpg"></html>\n<html><img src="cardinterior.jpg"></html>\n\n[[Return|A Week Ago]]
When you're so absorbed in another person that you can't imagine life without them.\n\nA way to ignore my problems so I could fix yours.\n\n[[Return|Years Ago]]
Scared of straying from the path. Afraid of leaving this world until I'm pulled kicking and screaming from it.\n\n[[Return|Years Ago]]\n
Love you always.\n\n<html><img src="ryan and travis bunny.jpg"></html>\n\n<html><a href="http://\nwww.theautumnalcity.org/memorial/">Return to Site</a></html>
Nothing was hidden between us. We thought all of our problems were solved in those fleeting moments of happiness.\n\n[[Return|A Week Ago]]
When did it get so hard to put my arms around you?\n\n<html><img src="ryan and travis woods.jpg"></html>\n\n[[Return|Days Ahead]]\n
Ahead of us the water broke upon the shore, and behind stretched the blue expanse of nothing. A strange peace.\n\n[[Return|This Summer]]
Last night, I missed [[your call|Phone Call]], and I don't know why I didn't worry when Mom couldn't find you.\n\nI guess I thought a plane ticket would hold you here. That we had to meet again, so I could tell you how much you mean to me.\n\nI wish I could have protected you, [[Ryan|Ryan]].
When you would grow your hair long and move to California. \n\nWrite an album about that time when you weren't deliriously happy.\n\nUse that beautiful empathy to bring others out of despair.\n\nYou could have left everything behind. \n\nWe could have tried again, looked somewhere else for the [[childhood|Childhood]] we lost [[years ago|Years Ago]].
A week ago you called to thank me for your [[Christmas present|Christmas Present]]. You woke me up from a nap, and I didn't have [[much to say|So Many Things]].\n\nWe used to talk until the sun came up, before I realized I couldn't [[drink with you|Drinking With You]] anymore. \n\nWe spent a sober week together [[this summer|This Summer]].