Thursday, August 26, 2010

Days with Mary

It had been 3 years since the divorce and 7 years since Mary's death.

Hit by a drunk driver while bicycling to elementary school, the loss of
his daughter had made the last seven years a long rain of agonizing
loneliness. His construction business had been suffering in the new
economy but it was his soul that was failing. As he sat on the park
bench and watched the fathers playing and talking and smiling with their
children, their daughters, he was filled with a deep, painful resentment
and envy. He wanted their happiness, he wanted his own daughter back.
His mind was spinning, chattering about justice and fairness, re-hashing
legal discussions he had once with lawyers, lawyers that didn't
understand that there is no justice. He thought about the driver, about
the parole, he pictured him eating in restaurants, sleeping soundly,
making love and laughing with friends and he was enraged. He wanted to
kill, he wanted to find the driver and hurt him, kill him maybe, he
fantasized about drowning him, drowning him with liquor and beating his
limp body until he could hit no more. His heart raced and his hands
shook and he felt tears streaming down his cheeks. He lit a cigarette
and breathed calming breaths, that's what the doctor said to do, when
the feelings came. So he waited and sat. He sat and waited for everyone
to leave, for the chatter and laughing and smiling fathers to leave and
for the sun to sink down, down into the black night. It was late now and
Tom sat alone, save for a transient singing to himself on the other side
of the park. Soon he was fully alone. He sat under the moon and smoked
and felt waves of sadness and rage, rage and sadness. It was dark, the
wind was blowing paper and dirt into the night air when Tom felt it.
Something had come. He looked around and behind him but there was
nothing...nothing but the wind and the night. Yet it was there, it was
with him. Someone was there...someone had come. His hands shook and he
wanted to scream out in agony but he sat and he waited. It stayed with
him, it felt warm and peaceful. In the silence of the night he cried
When he got home, he opened the door and sat on the couch. Something
was breaking inside, like a chain, something was changing...opening. The
rage was pouring out...emptying. He felt so tired now but the rage and
sadness was fading like voices from a memory. He knew someone had come
to him and he wondered if she had been with him. His hands had stopped
shaking and he felt had been so long...and he fell deep
into a restful sleep. A sleep so deep that his body began to repair
itself from the years of pain. He dreamt. He dreamt about the days with the sun. They were at the lake...she was there...they were
together. They were in the boat on the water and the wind was warm. He
was looking at her and she was looking at him... and they were laughing.

When Tom awoke there were calls on his phone. He had slept so soundly,
the most in years.
He went to the window, it was raining and the wind was howling. He
opened it and let the water come in, it flowed down the wall and onto
the floor. He felt the mercy of release.
He felt she was happy.


Square Corner said...

Man o' man, that was good!!! You gotta write more of these. Short stories are definitly your thing. This awespme piece had me from the get go. Superb job, HP.

Anonymous said...

Authentic piece.

Thanks HP.

Old Ollie the Tired Monk

HTT said...

Been away for a while, but glad I came back.
Re this one: how do you know that's how it feels? You seem to really know.