Thought it would be a good time to take another look at a poem that Jake's father wrote for him:
a man now stand you
on roots no one can claim
as good as you
(pure born god-son
look at you anywhere
across the globe).
At birth you were blue
I witnessed you suck
that first breath in and turn
as white as snow on top
of Everest. Pure. Pure.
Goodness and Mercy.
Jumble of words my only
clue to give to you
for your mountain view
to burn the libraries
and burn us too
(all that’s come
Your (my side) grandfather’s
head handed him
on a silver Salome platter (he knew
more than he could hold on to)
and your great grandfather
stumbled and I shamble
and out of the phoenix ash
of my/your ancestral men you flew
out of the John Baptist ash
you flew beyond the pebbles
in the Jordan where we, the men
before you wash our sad, sad feet
but not for naught—the truth
when sung soothes far beyond
I remember your grandfather
(not sober) singing, weeping
in my high gliding stone dead
“A voice of one, crying
in the wilderness, prepare ye
the way of the Lord.”
I remember holding you, screaming
with good rage in a Sea Ranch night.
Taking you outside under the moon
and the giant pines—screaming, screaming.
Holding you. I didn’t know what else to do.
Kicking. Screaming with good rage
till you slowly trembled yourself into rest.
Forgive us, Lord, we know
not what we do.
Good rage. Burn us to the ground.
Good rage. So little good seems
to have come of John the Baptist
and what followed. Your grandfather
loved John the Baptist. Wept and sung
his words and went too easily
into their good night
which I won’t do.
All these words and others too
are here for you, may they be true.
~written by Stephen Gyllenhaal. Originally published in Claptrap: Notes from Hollywood, (Cantara Books, 2006)
(taken from a post on IHJ)
Thanks to IHJ for today's birthday surprise - a new picture of Jake (with Reese and her children):
Jake has probably gotten some wonderful insight - about his father, himself and how children will affect his own life - from reading his father's words.
(Photo courtesy of IHJ.)
Birthday bonus - outtakes from the Esquire shoot:
More at Jake Gyllenhaal Info.