Now He Lives

By Nick Kocz

Memoir

When he was eighteen months old, Stephen was captivated by a nursery rhyme.  He wanted me to read “Humpty Dumpty” to him every night.  We had three different picture-books of the nursery rhyme and often he had all of them spread open on his bedroom floor.  Hearing and seeing “Humpty Dumpty” was not enough—he needed to absorb it into his body.  As I read, he ran his fingers over the pictures of the brick walls Humpty precariously perched upon.  He touched the king’s men who gathered to unsuccessfully rehabilitate the broken egg.  And then he would stand back and flap his hands, stiffly and with utter concentration.  I would no sooner finish one “Humpty Dumpty” reading when he’d demand another.