Sweet Lies

2 09 2012

“Experience of danger does not derail the experience of life,” says the mother to her son. Soft brown eyes like her deceased husband’s look up at her with absolute affection and need—obsolete of understanding.

At one, Johnny is curious and light. She with the pilled turtleneck gazes ahead at the morning light pouring onto the kitchen table. Tomorrow when Johnny understands, light will run from them–for they are contagious. Cast from a caste on India’s Southern Coast without a father, mother and son arrive in sunny humid South Carolina. Krispy Cream donuts can only hide the stickiness of truth.

After Johnny is fed, she hums—filling the shadows under the table with vibrations—trying to push the universe’s light out of her world. Where will they go today? Hours of horrific excess creep into her consciousness. Yesterday or maybe it was two months ago, she and Johnny (well really she—adding another’s name to the story prevents her from living too much in the reality of her loneliness) bought this plantation with her husband’s last winnings. If only winnings had wings. If only those winnings had flown Dejajeen to them. But gambling does not provide one with such a mystical high—just a temporary delusion of possible grandeur. And then one falls hard. Concrete. Blood. The bet is over. A messenger shared the news and mother and child fled from a family of chaos and addiction to a place without depth or darkness.

To explain her story to the neighbors would be difficult; but perhaps it would be best to practice on them before she must share with her son? Nevermind. Krispy Cream awaits. Stainless steel, glass, and sugar. The donut shop on 2nd street provides the mother with anonymity and helps her dismiss the need for purpose. If the customer in front of her can easily order a glazed donut, so can she.

To have the choice of sweetness without judgment sweeps a smile onto her face. But then she desires to choose something of a different sweetness. Her son does not care. Nor the world. The mother hopes it matters to the donut.

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