Dead Dad Club

By | 15 May 2023

The picture glints with the summer of 2008.

Paling behind us the sky, a war waged between sea and God. It doesn’t end. It won’t.

That shirt he’s wearing, the one with the navy flags on the back. Nautica
he knew.

Persimmon juice in between my fingers as I watch him roast a whole pig, its eyes black beads
begging to be plucked and buried next to the public park.

His Nikon D500 forgets where the faces are.

What is it called when you want something but cannot fathom it?

Zuì ài (love of your life). No— ròuyù (carnal desire)?

They keep asking why I stole the money from their sock drawer, all the way to

2009, where the summer is more red than green.

Baskets on the porch with unripe mangoes and river barramundi, salt from the mud sinks to
the bottom. Line-caught, he boasts—

Jingjing, I’m so proud of you. Youre amazing. Love you! Dad.

I’m all hooks in lip, line-caught in the mouth. Choking on air and perfume.

The beach isn’t a place for children. One day, you’re sitting there hoarding water for a moat
made out of sand, and the next,

He’s a beached whale, all the way from the inland sea. Is that meant to be the punch-

line? Caught between the optics of erosion at the base of a cliff and a church, beige as the inside of a cradle.
Neither of those things are inherently violent but when he looks at me from that angle, all I can think about is
the time I waited for him to pick me up from the train station.

I sat through an entire sunset and six trains billowing smoke to learn that sometimes he

Hey you [someone is tapping on the window]. It’s a clear day.

When he asks me why I have parked here, I tell him it’s not my car.

A slip of paper that reads the date and time and one-hundred-and-ten dollars flaps around on
the windshield like a piece of loose skin.

It’s been fifty-six days. The ground has picked up again.

After the wake, a lady in a frilly collar shoves a fifty into my palm; the plastic money smells

She was wailing in the back row. Tā shìgè hǎorén (He was a good person) [smiling].

Xièxiè āyí (Thank you, auntie).

Debt hangs there, a wet towel on the hills hoist swaying side-to-side.

Pray tell, Good Lord. Why does your blood taste of cherries—

and mine of cyanide. Oh! I know! I haven’t repented since 2009!

Jingjing, shàngdì ài nǐ (Jingjing, God loves you) [drowning].

He stopped taking pictures of us and started taking pictures of things far away.

Dark green pastures dotted with white cotton sheep. Sleep tight, babies. Don’t bleat for no

An urn the size of a plum is somewhere in a box. Take him with you when you go overseas.

Everyone is there, in the pictures.

This entry was posted in 109: NO THEME 12 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Related work:

  • No Related Posts Found

Comments are closed.