There came a point when my father could no longer contain the loss. His nights filled in dreams of the end, and once awoken he’d wander off to share the horror with the owls. He never cried in front of us.

At dawn I’d see his outline though the screen door—all legs and no torso—a geography of an old man’s stance. And as the morning wind moaned through the eaves, I’d remember that movement means life, and be happy he roamed.

In those moments, I noted the light around him wavered in bronze. “Are you coming back?” I’d call out into the yard.

He would stand a bit longer before moving, “I reckon.”

Hovering by the breakfast table he poured from a ready decanter. Whiskey seeped easy heat into the morning. His eyes thoughtless and cool as he sipped. He called me by her name.

 

 


Catherine Moore

Catherine Moore is the author of three chapbooks and the forthcoming ULLA! ULLA! (Main Street Rag). Her work appears in Tahoma Literary Review, Caesura, Southampton Review, Still: the Journal, Mid-American Review, Appalachian Heritage, and various anthologies. A Walker Percy and Hambidge fellow, her honors include the 2015 Best Small Fictions and Pushcart nominations.