A father and son have coffee.
"Lots of dead walking 'round. Many don't ever come to know it."
After years of questioning the presence of my own passions, my father's declaration confirmed my concerns with a grave finality.
"I have often felt a ghost," I replied. Shamed.
"I've seen it!" my father turned with wide eyes. His twisted finger pointed at my chest, "I've seen it in you!"
I took a sip of my black coffee. Under his cool gaze its warmth did little to calm me. He turned away again. We sat in silence. His melancholy was an aura to which I had become attuned.
I chuckled, "A post-life crisis, if you will."
"Don't you play me, boy! I didn't come down here to be made fun of!"
"I'm sorry. I'm just trying to break the tension, dad." I held up my hands, as if to deflect his anger reaching me from across the table. "I may have died, but that doesn't mean I haven't been trying to make something of myself."
He looked at me. I recalled the very first time I had seen that sorrow in his eyes. We had come to the diner for a cup of coffee. It was our daily routine before we both headed off to school. He to his and I to mine. It was my graduation year. The robber at the diner had been skittish that morning.
"This is a crime scene," was the last thing I heard. The last thing I saw were my father's sad eyes, looking at me for the very first time.
"Do you think that you'll ever find your way?" my father asked as he stood up from the table.
"I'm working on it. Time will tell." I took another sip and watched my father walk outside. He had school to teach.