the fan..

standing atop a metal step-ladder…rag in one hand…cleaning solution the other…uncovering what was once a gossamer ceiling fan in the old man’s home…untouched for years…

matted dog hair…lint…grease…grime…black as coal in a miner’s lungs…neglected…a job left to someone else…

everyday calls would come to me in the Bronx…,I’m so lonely since mom passed, the old man would say, Please come stay for awhile…please, a lonesome soul’s request…this is to be honored…

it had been year’s since i’d seen him…didn’t return for mom’s funeral…nor holidays…no calls were made…no voices heard…a family severed…

and everyday me and the old man would go on these long drives…two…three hours at a time…stopping to eat..a Pepsi…take a piss…made sure his days were filled…on call 24 hours…dementia never stops…

cooking…cleaning…listening to tales over and over again without letting-on…no sign of a brother…nor a sister…just me and pop…life placed on hold…his…and…mine…

but…that fan…that filthy dirty fan flying at all hours sending shit everywhere had to end…it was time…

rubbing…dusting…going over cracks and crevices as an anger grew…just grew…talking to myself…coming to terms with…this…this…

What’s the problem…,the old man asked from the Lazyboy below…,You mad at me ’bout somethin’…

shook my head…kept cleaning…,Tell you’re upset ’bout somethin’…Sorry…tried ta’keep-up with this house as best I could…

Stop, i said with a pivot, just stop…,silence…not a word was spoken by him for a minute or two…

How often does your daughter visit…,he looked at me, how often dad…

Never…haven’t seen her since mom’s funeral…was that in the winter…

yes dad…yes it was…,wiped harder…and harder…,and the son…what ’bout him and his wife…when dad…

I guess ’bout once a month…yea…that sounds right…

mmm….

why…

let me get this straight…this whole time i’ve been homeless…New York…Vermont…Philly…Wherethefuckever…homeless because of…nevermind…

what…

no-one’s cleaned…cooked…taken you on your excursions…listened to you…

guess not…

guess not…

I’m sorry if…

not you pop…not you…,stepped-down…,here’s the news dad…pretty soon they’re going to place you in an assisted living situation…

fancy word for nursing home…

don’t know pop…don’t know…

so…

i’ll be gone…done…finished…

what’d you mean…

i don’t wanna deal with these motherfuckers again…hear me…no-more…this was done for you…my part was done…

yes…your mom would be proud…

well…fuck her too…,whispered…,she started all this…

you sayin’ somethin’….

and i’m the one in question…uh…go figure…go figure…,folded the ladder…

can we go get some pie…I’d like some pie…

yes dad…we’ll go get pie…

One thought on “the fan..

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