The Truth Board

A Blog by the Editors of
The Truth About the Fact: An International Journal of Literary Nonfiction

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

The Truth About the Fact: A Journal of Literary Nonfiction is an international journal committed to the idea that excellence in the art of letters can play a vital role in transforming the planet we share.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Half Awake

My eyes burst open. I had been exhausted. It was four in the morning with the wine drunk starting to fade. My lover was fast asleep on my shoulder, having met me at my apartment for our usual reunion and night of rest. Flashed on the screen of my eyelids right before they lifted swiftly like a canvas screen rolling upward in an instant, was the movie theater. It was the old theater we used to go to, my father and I, when I was growing up. I use the term “growing up” loosely as a 22-year-old graduating college in less than one month. The image of my father and I walking into the theater continues even as I attempt to distract my self by looking at the sleeping body next to me or scanning the Huffington Post. We would walk into the front of the theater that was anything but charming and half falling apart. Looking at the film posters and giggling as we shuffle toward the snack counter to get popcorn and sour patch kids. We would sit and as the theater lights went off we would giggle again. I would snuggle into his shoulder. He would finish the popcorn before the movie even began. Scraping and shoveling it into his mouth with a flat palm, I had the urge to yell at him with a nudge. I was, after all, his only daughter and the baby of the family, I had to take care of him. Instead I just laughed and looked forward, squinting my nose with each suck and tingle of the sour patch kid on my tortured tongue that my mom would disapprove of. These were the best Sundays. Now in my apartment, my grown up apartment, why do I wake up to these thoughts. I roll out of the bed and out of my bedroom to sit on the small kitchen table. Journal in hand, I know what is about to happen—something rare and something I have to hide from my sleeping companion. I cry. I write. I weep like a child away from her parents at camp. I write to my father: Papa, wherever you are, though I know where you are, asleep in your big fluffy bed that you fill with white pillows, I am sorry. Papa, I love you. I love you. I love you.

Why do I keep writing this? And after every “you” a tear falls on the page. This is out of character for me, and I hide it well. I don’t say what I am sorry for, I don’t say it now, and I won’t say it out loud. I know what it is but not completely. Perhaps I won’t know until I do grow up.

I love you, Papa. I am sorry to be so far away, maybe. I am sorry I don’t know how to be your little girl, sometimes. When will I feel like a woman? Let’s go back to the theater. I won’t yell at your for all the salt you pour on the popcorn. As I gain control of my tears I can feel my lips purse again. The sour sweet of each little candy leaves tiny cuts, but I still stick my finger in the bottom of the bag to get the last bit of sugar stuck in the corner.


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