Not knowing where I walked,
I walked on.
I listed (then and now listing, with him, that boy of me)
the things in my head for my father to be,
from success of the real–
salesman of the year or a rich new job or a man with bigger
–to the victories of fantasy which blew through my mind at the time–
Superman Spiderman The Hulk Wolverine–
(though nothing stuck)
(Stone #5 was hot; glowing with a heat, either all its own or from the dirt or from my hot hand. Purpose: it glowed with a white-hot purpose for me to use it somehow)
but none stuck;
and from this failure in these descriptions,
real or imagined,
he became once again a failure.
Even now, at the very end of him, he’d failed to be
him to be.
The same thing?
A pair of arthritic hands
and a time-dulled wedding ring?
I’d tried to actually snap Stone #5 in half with my small hands,
the crusted blood under my fingernails making
me think I was stronger somehow (the bird’s blood and the cowardly death I’d caused mixed with comic book characters and a blood-crazy savage somewhere in my long, deep past as a human, perhaps)
Then I remembered the fight that night we’d had
“Get mad at me!” I screamed
at him to scream
When Roger Vanek’s mom called eventually
the window collapsing away from its frame like nothing when the stones
and he listened and nodded and uh-hummed,
then replaced the receiver
and returned to the couch.
Then, what was wrong with snapping twigs like matchsticks?
Do a thing like him and you’ll do it too — what a stupid thing to think!
But not a twig I picked up again for that purpose.
Since now I searched for stones with that hot purpose
in my hands and
in my head,
The stats and descriptions of what I needed to use for them for what?
rose up in my head
Too small too little too big for my pocket too similar to the red one too jagged just right
Counting stones like rosary beads