My Father's Dreams

March 18, 2017
By , Clarkston, MI

On Sunday nights he’d turn on the dusty television,
slouch in his chair, and ask me to jot down
a usually unrealistic and short list
of impossible jobs for him.
Everyday,
he’d promise
and he’d promise to never
slack off again. However,
it was always empty.
I was almost happy
he had no job,
because it meant he would spend more time with me.
Almost.
His giant belly always bulged
with soda stains on his shirt
and a 5-o’clock shadow shielding his long, defeated face.
His eyes deadlocked on the screen,
only moving his large body if needed.
Words escaped my dull pencil and onto the heavily-used page:
Accountant, Veterinarian, Teacher, Lawyer.
His dreams vanished long ago
but not his hope.
We sat in the dark
happiness of the living room.
Was it really happy though?
That was the past when nothing
mattered.
Lost in his thoughts…
the hopeless dreams that only stayed on the paper.
A sunset through the window.
I wonder if he cried
as he tried to fall asleep,
thinking about his life.
My father could only think of
Titles, nothing more. This man
would search for change
between the cushions
with his hands clenched tightly
around every cent.
Pondering over his life and future, almost
content with what he tried to become.
Almost.






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