Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Waving at the Stars

Our prompt from Trifecta this week concerns the word, "hollow".
I hope that you like my story. And, if you haven't lay down on a blanket under the stars with a loved one recently, I urge you to give it a try. It is an amazing and humbling experience. The stuff that treasured memories are made from.

Waving at the Stars

I hate the Superbowl and the World Series and any other night that gives my Dad a reason to drink.
If his team wins, he drinks to celebrate.
If his team loses, he gets angry and drinks to feel better.
When Dad drinks too much, my Mom gets hit.....a lot!
No matter who wins the game, my Mom always loses.

I hate my Dad.
He never really hit me that much.
Before he gets to me, he's usually used up his anger hitting Mom.
After he hits her, he always feels bad and says, "I love you" to her.
His words are hollow and won't fix her heart.
I love my Mom.
Her heart is strong though.
It must be to hold all the love that she says she has for me.

Some nights, while Dad watches the game on TV, my Mom and me lay on blankets in the backyard.
We stare into the night sky and look at the stars.
There are stars everywhere!
Some stars are big and others are small but they all twinkle.
Diamonds in our sky.
Mom says that on some stars, there might be a Mommy and her special boy on a blanket in their yard, looking out into their starry night.
Maybe the little space boy is waving at us right now.
We'd better wave back, just in case.
So we wave at the stars, my Mom and me.

"Goddammn fuckin' refs!" Dad screams from the living room. A glass breaks.

Mom kisses me.
She brushes away the hair from my forehead.
She asks me to count the stars that twinkle and shine so bright.
To count, and keep counting until I run out of numbers or the sky out of stars.
She hugs me tight and holds me close.
I can feel her heart beating fast and strong.

"Promise me you'll keep counting until I come back."

I promise.

She goes inside.

I wave at the stars.


  1. Okay I'm crying now.

    This speaks so many volumes. Of strength and hope, but also of despair and fear. And the voice of child is very clear throughout in the words and structure. An amazing piece!

  2. I'm finding it difficult to express how I feel about this. It is AMAZING and chalk full of every emotion I can imagine as they all ran through my head at one time. I know about watching the sky and counting stars with someone special but not in this way. I'm sad and happy at the same time but, really, my heart is broken for mom and son. They should feel safe and they don't.

  3. I teach at a small school that draws its' student population mainly from a social assistance housing project. The kids are amazingly resilient for what they see and have to endure. The stories they tell would break your heart twenty times over. All of us who work at my school feel like we are doing God's work, helping these kids have six hours of calm and safety in their day. I am glad that you both were touched by this story. Thanks for your generous comments.

  4. This is heartbreaking. You did a great job of capturing the pain.

  5. This is absolutely heartbreaking.

  6. Replies
    1. Thank you very much for taking the time to read this and comment. I appreciate your words very much. :)