Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Things I Remember:
My first memory was my father teaching me to tie my shoes at three years old.  I remember after successfully tying my shoe I ran into the house to show my mother what I had accomplished. 
At age four I remember there was a poster of Queensryche on my paneled, bedroom wall and I refused to change my clothes in my room because I felt like they were watching me. 
I remember hearing the Barberton Speedway loudly at night. 
I recall one time I was playing outside our trailer near a swing set that my dad was building but never finished.  Over at the next house there were two huge, black dogs that appeared to be the size of horses that were digging through the neighbor’s trash.  I was petrified with fear and quickly ran to my trailer before they could see or chase me.
One day, a tire plant that was not a mile from our trailer park was consumed with fire.  I didn’t know what was going on until I left my friend’s house and walked down the street to mine.  The smoke filled my nostrils and I looked up to see where the smell was originating.  The sky was black and was raining little black ashes all over me and the ground.  Upon noticing this I looked at the bottom of my bare feet and they were completely black.  I raced home to my mom, afraid of what was happening outside that I didn’t understand.  
I don’t remember stealing a gummy worm from the store.  I remember standing outside the car while Mom went inside and my dad yelled at me and explained why stealing was wrong.  He took the gummy worm and threw it into the street.  I can vividly remember seeing the brightly-colored gummy worm covered in cinders.
A few times my dad and I took a kite to fly out behind the trailer park where there was an open lot.  I remember the wind, the cold and seeing the red, yellow, black and orange kite hovering in the blue sky. 
Back then I had to ask my parents for the rare privilege to drink a Coke.  That didn’t stop me from sneaking drinks of theirs when they weren’t looking.  On this particularly memorable time, Dad had used his near-empty Coke can for an ashtray.  It was one of the most disgusting things I have ever tasted. 
I enjoyed the company of our elderly neighbors so one Saturday morning I left the house to go over to their trailer and see them.  My parents were still asleep and had no idea where I had gone.  That was the day I learned not to go anywhere without telling my parents.  
I remember my parents taking me down the street to Dairy Queen where I would always get a chocolate M&M blizzard. 

Thursday, September 1, 2011

What Love Means

What Love Means
At the age of five I learned what love meant.  Love meant that Mommy wanted to be with someone else besides me.  At the age of eight I saw what love meant.  Love meant that Daddy loved his alcohol.  At the age of seventeen I felt what love meant.  Love meant that instead of being at home, I was in the back of his car.  At the age of twenty-six I knew what love meant.  Love meant that I had love myself enough to do anything to get away from my husband.  
For once in my life my head was clear and I knew what had to be done.  It was a difficult plan because I had never even thought about killing someone or had any idea how to do it.  I mean, I have watched TV and cop shows and whatever so I kind of knew how not to leave clues.  Don’t do crazy internet searches, pay with cash, and don’t leave your hardware store receipts around.  Making it look like an accident would be the difficult part.  
I sat down at the kitchen table and took my fork with shaking hands as I plunged the utensil into my steaming macaroni.  He sat on the couch, hand down his pants as if he thought his junk was going to walk away and he had to anchor it down.  He was a damn slob and the mere reminder of his presence; the smell of his sweat on his dirty laundry, the shavings left in the sink in the morning, the coffee cup left on the counter after he left was enough to make my insides squirm with disgust and hatred.  
“Dan, dinner’s getting cold,” I called from the table reluctantly.  I would rather be anywhere else in the world than sitting besides him at the dinner table.  He grabbed his beer can off the arm of the sofa and burped his way over to the table, grabbed the bowl and retreated to the couch.  I let out a sigh of relief as he plopped down on the couch.  Dodged a bullet.   I stared at him as he took bite after bite, the noise of his chewing affected me and made me want to get sick.  If only I had spiked his macaroni with arsenic in a matter of hours he’d be writhing in agony, inches from a painful death.  But, arsenic could be traced and I was looking for something more along the lines of an accident.  That specific accident I hadn’t yet figured out but hopefully my brain would come up with an idea soon before he decided it was time for my face to meet the back of his hand again.