Saturday, June 13, 2009

Empty...also

Hazy sheets of heat rose from spans of concrete, the bridge before her car. Surrounded by strangers traveling her direction, and not, watching wind push water far below. Tired hands gripped the steering wheel for support.

Why did he call me now?

Fifteen years. Hard, long, after she moved out. Never wondering if it was the right thing to do. Her bags packed themselves. Did she dare, yes she did.

How did he find me?

Absently she twists a tuft of hair, fallen in the breeze through the window. Gulls float lazily over breaking waves. A few cards received along the years, he did not know she had kids of her own now. No note to open, she never wrote back. Better that he never know.

What does he need now?

His job had always kept his busy, surprised he has time for me now. Attitudes, actions, those last few years together, always alone. Only his rule, oppressive weight encumbers her shoulders. He better not start. She knows him and how he is.

Why am I even going?

Fingers drum, considering the turn signal and the next exit. Come again, or never. Too many missed years and memories, laid out before her for the world to see. Wishing her mind was far away.

He will only hurt me again.

Run, escape, avoid. Thoughts run rampant, thrashing like a bear caught in a trap. Go home to her family, where he doesn't have to be right. Resigned she parks outside the coffee shop. Open the door, get out, get it over with.

He will cry real tears, ask for forgiveness. All he ever wanted to be was a daddy, to love her, but he didn't know how. Try as he might, he only pushed her away, as he ran off to another meeting. Trying to keep home simple, so he could work, away from empty houses, vacant lives. He now knows different and only wants a second chance.

And so did she.

[The Beginning? After fifteen years, they talked all afternoon. Her failed first marriage, her happy second and their four kids. His job at the coffee shop after workforce reduction. The road ahead was as long as the road behind, but it was a beginning, of something new. A silly grin greets his face every time he tells me this story. Redemption.]

20 comments:

Daniel said...

Now the story is complete, ..., or is it?

LENORENEVERMORE said...

great choice of words as usual...
Great weekend!

lettuce said...

i love the grin "greeting" his face
:-)


also here to shamelessly promote my latest blog post which is shamelessly promoting a new charity project - please read it and if you feel able help advertise (or contribute in any other way) that would be FAB

Candie Bracci said...

wow,I hope it will go ok.

Brian Miller said...

@daniel - they continue to write the story to this day...

@lenore - ty, hope you have a great weekend as well...

@lettuce - will be by to check it out in a bit!

@candi - its a true story, and it has for now. this meeting happened about a year ago and they are doing well.

Cinnamon said...

So many people are in this situation , estranged from a family member- I am glad it is going well for them.

Well written Brian :)

Lorraine said...

So many emotions, so vivid, it's like a movie I watch intensely, a cinematic treat without vision, wow Brian!

California Girl said...

beautifully written Brian. You drew me in.

Leah said...

This is great, and the last one too.

Very spare, moving.

tony said...

Redemption.It's Good.Great Prose as usual Brian

Marianna said...

As always great writing and a fun to read post :)

Have a great week Brian!
xoxo

Dot-Com said...

Really great story. Hope you had a good weekend.

otin said...

I thought I was following you already, just an oversight on my part! The thing that I always find interesting about your writing is that I don't know if I am reading fiction or real life situations!

Ronda Laveen said...

Ahhhh...

Brian Miller said...

@ronda -teehee. smiles

@otin - 98% real with 2% dramatic effect. I'll leave it up to you to find the 2%.

@dot-com - ty. had a marvelous one, hope you did as well.

@marianna - ty, hope your week starts well!

@tony - ty and yes it is, when we are open to it.

Baino said...

So this was real? So sad. I don't know any kid that's run away like this although I know a couple of parents who have moved and left their teenagers behind.

Verily I go. said...

Intense. So glad there was time for them.

Mrsupole said...

I hope everything works out in the end. Those are some interesting love stories. I enjoyed this story very much. Thank you for sharing it.

God bless.

Brian Miller said...

@baino - all real. i unfortunately have seen too many kids run away. maybe not physically but emotionally, barricading themselves in their own thoughts trying to sift through and find a small island of reality to hold onto.

@mrsu - thanks. only time will tell how old wounds heal. glad this one had a happy ending. in losing much of what they held onto they found each other.

Ben said...

That was heart-wrenching to read at first. I was expecting it to go poorly. I love the silly grin though at the end. Really good story. I'm glad it all worked out.