With me

by mandaceehb

Knock knock. Hello… Dad? Can you hear me? I’m raising a fist to this curtain of clouds and dust, because I want to talk to you and I don’t know how to reach you. Maybe if I shout it out it would seep into the pores of the sky and bleed into your ears; maybe if I attached a letter to a bird it would be obedient enough to fly across space to give it to you. But the maybes you choose not to ride on are not maybes, and I will leave them behind.

I was lying awake last night recalling memories of my childhood, which are admittedly limited. Songs that I will never forget but deny I remember, favourite toys all named after the obvious, television shows I used to watch- and then I chanced upon this memory I didn’t know I still had.

It’s a funny thing, isn’t it? There are memories that we replay in our heads all the time of momentous moments by our own classifications in our unextraordinary lives, but when the quieter and unassuming moments surface, they are the ones that shake us the most.

You were in it. Mum was out, and you were cradling me in your huge arms, so tenderly, with a kind of gentleness I don’t think I’ll ever understand until I become a mother. You laid me down softly in the bed and fell asleep beside. Maybe the stars were outside waiting for you, or the pale crescent polishing up her faint smile to greet you, but there you were, telling them you’d see them in your dreams. Maybe I was there with you too, a giggling child teased by the warm night breeze, on a bed of grass beside a father that she loved.

Tonight I feel the same way; the crescent is outside, and it’s like you’re here with me again.

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