Sunday Morning, Two Weeks Later by Cory Cone

April 25, 2013 Comments Off on Sunday Morning, Two Weeks Later by Cory Cone

Momma looked younger. She wore girl clothes, not woman clothes: tight blue jeans, tight top. Her hair was cut short. I recognized her silver crucifix. She was drinking coffee from Dad’s mug. Her favorite one, with the picture of all of us at Disney, lay in pieces on the floor near the sink. I don’t know if she had dropped it, or smashed it, but that was the sound that woke me.

Bacon sputtered on the stove.

The room was heavy, clouded with her presence. She avoided my eyes except for half a second every time she sipped from the cup. Her fingers quaked and her long black nails clicked against the porcelain. Her foot tapped the tiles.

The bacon was burning, so I switched off the stove top, then took our broom and dustpan from beside the fridge and swept up the remnants of the broken mug while tears slipped past my lips.

She sniffled, the sound razor sharp, and pressed the flat of her palm to her left eye, smearing away wetness and mascara. “Who are you?” she asked.

I longed to throw the broom aside and embrace her with all of my might and anguish. I wanted to kiss her face and feel the warmth of her hands on my skin, but she shouldn’t have been there, in the kitchen, drinking coffee and waiting on the bacon that Poppa left burning. She shouldn’t have been.

“Thomas,” I finally said.

She set her mug on the table and moved a hand to her mouth. Her cheeks shone in the light of the kitchen.

Poppa came in as I was emptying the dustpan into the trash. He put his hands on Momma’s shoulders. His fingers dripped down her like vines. “Momma’s home,” he said.

Momma’s crucifix caught a ray of dawning light from the window and flashed in my eye. I left the room, turning my back on Poppa and that shadow of my Momma. I managed at the last moment to lift the lid of the toilet before the vomit rushed out in torrents.

© 2013 Cory Cone

Cory Cone lives in Baltimore, MD with his wife and two cats. He’s a Financial Aid guru at the Maryland Institute College of Art as well as a 2007 graduate. Occasionally he blogs at Sometimes he tweets, too. @corycone

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