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But if I don't do it now, I won't at all. Was chatting tonight, all over the board about books and things important, when a random tangent reminded me.


--

The tears slid down my cheeks, turned aside from pretty straight lines by the tinted, too large sunglasses I wore. He'd given them to me at grandma's, and I knew they weren't really his to give.

I hated them because I knew they'd been hers. But I wore them because they made him happy. When he was happy, he didn't take so many pills. Sometimes, if he forgot the pills for long enough, he even laughed and seemed enough like Daddy again that I could be his little girl.

The window of the car fogged cold around my cheek, and it should have been raining outside, but it wasn't. The sun faded into the horizon on the drive from Mayfield to Paducah, and I couldn't take my eyes off it.

Sunsets on Sundays made me sad.

I was seven years old, going on 12. 12 was important, I knew. He explained it to me often: When I turned 12, I would be a grown up, and I could choose to come and live with him. He was so sad, and he needed me. I knew he needed me. More than Mama did.

I heard M. playing with her dolls in the back seat, and I wished Elvis would stop playing on the radio. And I wanted desperately to turn off my brain, just long enough for it to stop hurting.

We'd go to his house before he took us back to her house, he promised. I didn't need to cry. It would only be two weeks before we'd do this again.

In my most secret place, I think he liked it when I cried, because it meant I felt his pain, too. There was so very much pain in him. It sliced through me whenever we were together -- so much that I was afraid to touch him.

One of us might shatter.

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
10zlaine
Feb. 25th, 2003 11:08 am (UTC)
Every time I read something you write, I can't believe you might consider yourself a newbie to this process.
chrisjournal
Feb. 25th, 2003 12:56 pm (UTC)
Hmm. Yes, I'm a newbie to this kind of writing. Fiction in general, but this slice-of-life stuff most especially, I think. I did work my way through college as a reporter, general assignment for the local paper during summers and stringing for the NY Times during the school year. But I was never one to make up or write stories as a child (I did write a little poetry, really bad poetry), nor did I ever write any fiction before I found this loveliness called fan fiction last year.

And scarily enough, it's only since I've been part of this LJ community that I've been brave enough to try personal writing. We have these chats that meander all over the place late at night, sometimes, and often I find myself thinking about little bits and pieces of life and what they've meant to me. It's a lot scary to post here, though. There are folks reading here who I don't really know at all, and whoa. Look at me being completely *not* private.

I almost set up a separate LJ for this kind of post -- still might. It feels raw and oozing to post something like this, but Mint says I must bungee. And bungee I shall.

Thanks, Tammy, for being out there.
nyc2la
Apr. 19th, 2003 11:39 pm (UTC)
I hope you don't mind me sneaking in to read this. I noticed you had friended me and I'm always curious who the people that do that are, as I'm sure they are of me. It's a very strange feeling opening your personal life to people you have no clue about. Thank you for inviting me into your inner circle. I promise not to abuse it. Of course, I say all of this before my comments below. LOL -- Feel free to unfriend me after, if you'd like. :-)

I have to tell you -- This was absolutely beautiful to read. Seriously. I realized after I had read your reply to the comment above, that it was based on a memory of yours. I'm speechless.

At first when I was reading, after noticing that you wrote fanfic -- I thought the father might have been Spike in the car with his daughter and that Buffy had died. Then as I continued down the passage it dawned on me that this was probably a snippet from a novel in progress. A young adult novel perhaps, something worthy of a Newberry Award? My mind still running with possibilities -- I came to the conclusion that this must be part of an adult novel with the same type of rich emotional texture found in, "Lovely Bones." Finally to realize this was a memory I was awed at how crisp and beautifully it was recounted.

Part of me wants to encourage you to explore it more and find a way to put it into a novel or memoir. It's too special to stay tucked away. However, I completely understand that this is very personal and not something to share. This all being said -- You should be writing a novel using your talent and getting it out there. Don't let it go to waste -- You're too damn good.



chrisjournal
Apr. 20th, 2003 05:59 pm (UTC)
*waves*

Nice to meet you, nyc2la! You've rendered *me* speechless here. I've been thinking about what you've said here nearly all day... I'll send a more detailed reply on email, I think. For now, let me say an inadequate thank you.

oh -- and I think I found you from Ginmar's LJ where you responded to her Giles fic, or perhaps someone pointed me at your fic???

Welcome to the funny farm!
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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