and God does not want us to suffer…

and this man did good things…good things…kindness…suttle gestures…nothing grandiose…flew under radar…wings never clipped…on-track always…this was the mission…purpose…

a family kept in check…food on a table…prayers at night…PTA meetings attended…a swat when needed…nothing more…always on cue…

one night though i heard the old Chevy start-up…put into gear…gravel driven through…separated…saw him pulling out backwards from a fogged-up window…he was gone..gone…

didn’t go to his job in the moon’s glow along the highway…did not stop by the bar for talk of old times and flirts with waitresses…wasn’t seen at the diner that morn…magically disappeared…vaporized into air along with prayers and PTA meetings and kindness and…and…all that never was…

mom sat by a phone in the kitchen for weeks…didn’t eat…didn’t cry…just sat there staring at this yellow handle with a cord attached…

I think he’s gone for good this time, i heard her mumble, What’d I do…what’d I do…my fault…all my fault…

would walk over to her and rub these loose rings of skin ’round her shoulders…,Don’t, she’d say, Don’t…go to bed baby…just go to bed…momma’ll be alright …

phone never rang…she never got out of that seat… i never left.. stayed with her…sat for hours in silence…drinking coffee with cheap half an’ half from a carton with Elsie on it…

how strange….how strange…and God does not want us to suffer…

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