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He sits at the driving wheel, anger slowly building from the workday. It is usually like this for him when he is upset over something. It gnaws at him, every detail vented out in his mind, and out loud while screaming in the car. Often, as is the case this time, a driver has a lapse in judgment, pulling out in front of him somewhat dangerously. Just the trigger he needs. He screams obscenities at the top of his lungs, the proverbial top popping off like Yosemite Sam after being bested by Bugs Bunny. It’s that image in his mind that causes a sudden chuckle to escape from his mouth, and with that the anger begins its descent.

He finds it curious how everything he thinks about somehow leads back to his father, who passed a little more than eight months ago. Bugs Bunny. They watched the Bugs Bunny and Tweety show every Saturday morning for years when he was a child. It was one of the few moments they had together in those days that were nice to think back on.

As tangents usually do, they jump from one thing to another. He remembers the time when he was four, sitting in the recliner, small enough to fit beside his father, who, although he is larger than life to his son, is actually small in stature. They sit together in the living room watching television with the rest of the family. His mother sits on the couch with the oldest sister, the younger sitting on the floor. He is the only boy and the youngest, and still very curious about the world around him. His fascination at this time is to determine how much his father actually hears. He says “hey” in his father’s ear. His father gives him a quick smile, shrugs his shoulders, and shakes his head side-to-side to tell him “nothing, sorry”. The boy is not deterred. He says it again and slightly louder, and gets the same reaction. He does not give up, he continues to yell it louder and louder until his father laughs at himself, gives his son a wink and a long smile as his left hand comes into view, his index finger and thumb close enough together to appear touching. The boy is satisfied with his victory, and a few years later he will understand that his father actually hears nothing at all.

The rest of his drive home is memories of his father, and how patient a man he really was despite all the anger and frustration his father held with the outside world. The hearing world. A world that he himself was a part of, yet his father was understanding enough to let him learn, which in turn taught him valuable lessons that most hearing people never understand. He is grateful for everything his father has given him, yet they offer little comfort as the teardrop meanders down his cheek, his eyes fixed on the road home, his mind lost in grieving.

R.M. Fraser


The following comments are for "Grieving"
by RMFraser

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