The Writer's Cramp 8/4/21
Grannny Nelson gathered all the new dandelion leaves. She was making her famous wine. It sat for awhile in those bottles, then she brought it out for dinner on a special night.
Everyone got a glass. And this year I was included, since I was now 21.
“Go on, Mercy, get yourself a glass. You can now have some of the finest dandylion wine around. Gran makes the best in the county.”
Mom urged me to get one of those old jelly glasses and fill it up. Everyone else had filled theirs a few times. The bottles were emptying fast. So I hurried to get a little so I could say I at least had a sip.
It burnt like fire. I gulped and gasped for air.
“Water, where’s some water!”
Mom, Dad, and Granny all thought this was the funniest thing they’d heard and seen all week.
“Mercy, sakes alive. It won’t kill ya’. Dandylion wine is good for the soul, good for what ails ya’. Drink up now, you’re finally of an age where ya’ don’t have to sneak it back behind the barn.” Snickers and giggles all around.
So I sipped a bit more. Then I snuck into the kitchen, poured it out and filled up with some water. No more of that evil brew. Nastiness personified. If all alcohol was like that, count me out.
The family got snockered on the wine, as usual. I left after a time. They’d be drinking all night, first the wine, then someone would find some whiskey, then they’d do shots of tequila. Always the same.
I walked to John’s house.
“They at it again?” he questioned when he answered the door.
“You bet. Can I stay here?”
We stayed up and talked, about how drinking ruined our parents, how alcohol ruined our friends. Then we planned our move to the city, the new jobs we started in a week.
A new life.