emma b. says

Monday, September 24, 2007

Our Parents Die

I was driving when I heard the news. She called me back after I had left a glib message, I can't meet you for lunch. Are you OK?
Her dad passed away last night, her disciplinarian softy dad who towed us on waterskis and cuffed us on the head. He used to call me George, as in Boy George, due to the electric blue eyeshadow I used to sport in those stupid-early days of adolescence. If I have any love of baseball, it's thanks to him, for meandering days of summer, idleness in each other's houses, and B always had on the game on the radio, and it never failed to lull me to sleep, crowds on the radio.
Now he's gone, she's a daddy's girl just like me, it fills me with undescribable loss, for her family, for him, going out pissed off til the end, for my parents, for my father. For those long ago long days of summer, we girls in the back of the truck when it was still legal, with the boat and the boom box, listening to Howard what's his face or Erasure, the wind in our eighties hair, and Buddy Senior with his cigar ribbing us and loving us.
Of our parents, those of us from our tight knit small town, his passing is the fourth, I hate this inevitable count down. Four shields passed out of this life, four guides gone. Scolds, fucking all of them, but in a gentle (well, memory distorts) still, we loved them.
I know you went out irracible, I hope you and your family, your daughter, my very old friend, got a little peace.
Heaven is for good men, and women. I think, at least I pray, if there is anything at all, let it be late summer, with baseball on the radio and all wet and windblown, the last ride on water skis, down in the water with the flag up, let it be bobbing there amid the swirling petrol rainbows, let it be quiet within the rope's circumference.


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