A letter to Berman Jafet

During Clark Writes’ first forum of the semester, Kate Summers took to the stage with a heartfelt poem dedicated to the newborn son of a dear friend. Read “A letter to Berman Jafet” below.

soccer-field-night1A letter to Berman Jafet- who came into the world just two days after Abuela Justina left

Kate Summers


My friendship with your mother began at the age of 13 on the steps of the basketball court turned soccer field.
She was wearing a green 80s-like shirt that said “hip hop don’t stop.”
My anorexia was wearing off.
The fluorescent lights shined on the “field” as we sat in the shadows.
My father, and his lack of Spanish, tried to translate our conversation.
It didn’t work,
But in that silence-
our friendship blossomed.

I noticed her cheeks.
Perfectly round.

Your grandfather
Your namesake
Is a soldier
Is a teacher
Is an organizer
Is a lover of dance parties.

Your grandmother
Will take you into the night
Show you the moon over
La laguna
She will hold you
Her smile will be your reflection

Your Aunts
Work hard
Will make your day.

May your soul shine like your mother’s cheeks.
May you be the dancing soldier, like your grandfather.
May you have the adventurous spirit of your grandmother.
May you have the laughs of your aunts.

May you know that while I am thousands of miles away
I am with you
And forever
loving you.


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