by JD Kell
In progress work with no real theme or direction yet.
I remember. I remember that day. You are sick, your face pale and sweaty, your blue eyes dull and listless. I cradle you in my lap, grasp your tiny monkey hands with my own, Your hair is damp against my cheek. It smells of sour milk.
I try to make you applesauce. I get one of our spindly chairs and crawl to the top of our kitchen counter. It is green like avocado. I pull down a cup and fill it with water. When I drop the apple into the cup, the water splashes onto the counter. Using a spoon, I try to mash the apple into the water. This is how you make applesauce, and applesauce will make you feel better. You like applesauce. But daddy is angry at the mess, at the water on the table, the spoon in the cup, the apple that didn't mash like I wanted it to. He sighs and yells like he does when I have disappointed him, and I am ashamed that I could not make you feel better, could not please daddy with my applesauce.
We go to the doctor, but you are not better, and I must go to the neighbors' house while mommy and daddy take you to the hospital. The neighbors have a little boy named Eric, and when he is fourteen he will shoot himself in the head, but he is not fourteen yet. He is only eight, and he is excited about Fruit Loops for breakfast in the morning. I have never eaten Fruit Loops, and I am looking forward to morning so that I can eat them, too, but mommy and daddy come home in the morning before we can eat them.
And you are dead.
We go to Hobo Joe's. Eric is mad, because he cannot eat Fruit Loops. His daddy yells at him, and the yelling makes my stomach hurt. Hobo Joe's has seats that mommy calls maroon. I sit in the maroon seat and it squeaks whenever I move. Mommy and daddy talk, but I do not understand what they are saying.
And you are missing.
I order a deep fried burrito. I have never eaten one before, and it flakes in my mouth. I like the taste and eat and eat while mommy and daddy talk. I eat so much my stomach sticks out.
But I still feel empty.