Posted on April 16, 2015April 16, 2015 by Patricia Ann McNair4.16.2015 Journal Prompt Image from Killer of Sheep April 16, 2015: These were the good times. Like this:Like Loading... Related
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Dad’s always saying shit. Mostly I don’t listen cos what he’s got to say I don’t need to hear. He makes like he understands things I don’t, but he’s all bluff and bluster, and hitching up his pants all the time when he could wear a belt, and he’s old as tv and black and white movies and dance halls.
But then I got this problem and I didn’t feel I could talk about it with Kenny or Fitz or Mark. Well, I could, but what would they know? They aint none of ‘em kissed a girl in their lives, not past the dreaming about it; and Fitz, well, I aint so sure it’s girls he want to kiss anyways. And the problem I got, it’s a girl problem.
Her name’s Amy and she’s pretty as punch and kick and scream. I get all kinds of soft just thinking about her and I can’t eat and I can’t think straight. Kenny says I’m maybe ailing for something, but then he don’t know. Nobody knows – ‘cept me and Amy, and there’s a cupboard in school where they store old books and it smells of dust and dry paper and moths in there. And me and Amy, well we was in there one day, and it’s dark as pockets and blindfolds in there. And Amy took my hand and pulled me close as kisses – and then there was kisses.
Me and Kenny, we talk about stuff sometimes and we’ve talked about Amy and what it would be like to kiss her – that was when she was something way out of reach. We talked about the precise angle the head should be and the eyes closed and the lips all pursed and pouting. We practiced some, using the finger and thumb of our hand pressed together. Or we kissed our reflection in a mirror once – though we promised to tell no one that we done that. But the thing is none of what we talked about prepares you for what it really is.
No one mentioned tongues before when they was talking about kissing. Jesus, and that’s the best bit, I reckon. Or how wet a kiss can be. And the taste which is different every time. And me and Amy, we been to that book cupboard more than once and it’s something we do now. And today she took my hand and she put it under her blouse and there’s the problem. Just when I think I know all there is to know about kissing, there’s something I really don’t understand.
So I asked my dad for advice. I didn’t say nothing about titties and what you do with them – it’s my dad after all. We was sitting at the table and I just asked him what it meant when a girl kept kissing you and stuff.
Dad didn’t just spill out with a joke like he does most times. He was thoughtful and he took the time to consider. Then he lowered his voice and he looked past me and he asked if I was still able to eat when I was thinking about this girl and if I didn’t maybe feel sick sometimes and if all my thoughts was like green darting fish and swimming all ways.
I just nodded.
He said, shit if that wasn’t love and he said that love would lift you up higher than a king, and it’d turn your world all upside down and inside out, and when it was done with you it’d kick you when you was down. What he said didn’t help with what Amy was wanting me to do in the book cupboard, but it sure as hell made sense.
Me and Kenny, a while after this, we was doing handstands up against the wall of the house, just for the fun of it. And he said it sure changed how you saw things, seeing the world all stood on its head like that – gave you a whole different view. And I just upped and said that it did and that it was like love in that regard. Kenny just about fell on his face and he stood the right way up again and he asked if I’d been to the book cupboard with Amy and I didn’t know how ever he knew about that – turns out she’s been kissing Kenny same as kissing me and maybe that’s what dad meant when he said love turns your whole world inside out, cos right then I hated my best friend more than cabbage or homework or wasp stings.