mr. kane

He likes me because of my thigh-high stockings. I know this because he told me. He’s charitable in his verbal appreciation of me. Though I can’t be certain, I suspect his loquacity probably helps dispel thoughts of his dead, manic-suicide, ex-wife. Filling up the space with sound. I’m curious as to why there are no pictures of […]

indelible ink

I finally reached my sister’s hospital room on the night of Christmas Eve, in the year that I was 24, she 28. Her head was a swollen mess of bruises and stitches and blood and hair. I’d caught a ride with a stranger to find the girl I’d loved for all these awful years so close to gone that […]

rock garden

Shortly after Mum threw the hammer at my little brother, I was finally awarded custody of him. It was a mixed blessing. Tripp, at 14, and I, at 24, were both relieved to have finally escaped Mum’s reach. But Tripp was already suffering from damage that would take far more than my custody of him to […]

the photojournalist

gives me his address and tells me to stop by. says he wants to read to me. yes, read to me. so i do. and he does. among other things. but then he starts in on the questions. he wants to know about my friends, who they are, what they’re like. “you don’t know them,” […]

how she loved him

While it’s true that Dad dying changed her life changed irrevocably, there was, long before that, the irrevocable changing of life anyway. It’s only now, in reaching an age he never attained, that she recognizes how simultaneously insubstantial and grandiose his existence. Insubstantial because of its disjointed structure. Brevity. Lacking the development of even one simple character […]

other places

I’m not sure what it means when something unknown and unexpected feels familiar instead. For all my livelong life, I’ve been propelled by some strange conflagration of nervous energy. A certain run-and-hide dynamic that leads me, time and again, into the arms of safely dangerous men. Which is perhaps where I’ve found myself again, except […]

the deacon’s bench

It is mother’s day and I am maybe 12 or 13 or it doesn’t matter because one day it will all flow together and become indistinguishable anyway, and she has decided that I will be accompanying her to church. In the years leading up to this point, my father was still alive and the notions of my […]

wake me up if you wake up

There is something that I have to tell you now. Something I’ve been trying to avoid. But that isn’t going away. My sister is dying of cancer. I was told this by a mother with whom I am not otherwise in contact. Which used to be her choice. And now is mine. There are those who […]

anyone

              why are you already a home to me   and why was walking in on you, asleep on the couch to the left like walking through a dream i’d had as a child of the woman I would one day become   the taste and smell of your breath […]

in touch with your sister

“You might want to get in touch with your sister,” the email says. It’s from Mum, of course, and I know this despite her having another new last name. “You might want to get in touch with your sister.” Our first correspondence in eight or twelve or six hundred years. No signature. No subject header. […]