“Of all the rotten goddamned days to die.” Richard Larks stared around the room, waiting for his wife to come to bed. She wouldn’t, of course. She was somewhere between Tyler Memorial and Beckman’s by now. Richard was left with a room full of her things, every object a phantom of the woman herself.
He palmed her opal earrings as the doorbell rang “Mrs. Larks! Trick or Treat!” called a querulous voice.
“She doesn’t hear you,” Richard muttered.
He found a needle and an ink pen among Sophia’s things then went to the kitchen for ice. Wasn’t this how they did it in the old days?… Read the rest
My first boss died a couple of weeks ago. He was a big man when I knew him. He lost weight after I moved away. He lost more with the cancer. While I’ll remember him by his laugh, a deep gut-chuckle, his wife and kids will remember his frailty. I’d trade shoes with them, if I could.
Sorry, sorry, I know I never make it over to ketchup with Mel and Michele, and then when I do, I’m all downer. The truth is, I’m awful at short prompts. I rarely speak in less than a hundred words, and when I do, too much is lost in the translation.… Read the rest
This morning, my children are safe and in school. But before I dropped them off, I read about four children who have died. One death was buffered by time, another was agonizingly fresh, and two more happened on a preschool bus in Carollton, Kentucky. These losses rattled me, not because they were mine, but because in my bipolar brain, there is only a short walk between the things I fear and the things that others live.
Each loss calls to mind another. I think about my best friend’s little sister, who died at fifteen, and I remember a student of mine whose son narrowly escaped drowning.… Read the rest
If you’re planning to watch Sam tonight, the ballet starts at 7PM central over at http://www.frazerumc.org/media/live/
Death stalked the convention, scythe at its side. There were other grim reapers, but they were laughing men and women who roamed among the other costumed characters posing for pictures and drinking at the bar. Death didn’t pose, didn’t laugh. It walked in a straight line from the glassed in foyer to the auditorium.
Everyplace Death passed, people shrank away. Though none of them saw it, they all felt the cold pall that settled in its wake. In the auditorium, it strode down the center aisle, leaving waves of nausea.… Read the rest
Thank you for eating today’s hot dog. You’ve bought us all twelve more hours until the inevitable. And maybe twelve more after that, if you’ll let me feed you another. This morning, when it took two of us to guide you to the door, and still your legs splayed out four times, I thought we had run out of time. But you revived. Found your footing. Ate the hot dog. The walking, at least, would be simpler if you stayed on the carpet or your bed.
You are old. Eleven. You have dysplasia in front and back. And yet, you will sleep on the hardwood.… Read the rest