Three Times True


“I’m leaving him,” I said on Father’s Day.
 
 
He threaded a worm onto the hook; cast out his line.  He shook his head.  “You young ones are hitched for fifteen minutes before you begin wondering if you’ve made a mistake.  Your mother and me were married for forty-seven years.  We had our share of ups and downs.”  His voice trailed off.  He landed a bass, flapping against the muddy shore as he extracted the hook from its lip.  “Give it time.”  He held up the fish, grinning.  I snapped a picture.  “You fishing some more?”
I watched the bass circle around the bucket of muddy water.  “No,” I said.  “I’m done.”


“I’m leaving him,” I said on my thirty-third birthday.  Hushed waitresses walked by on silent shoes.  Pretty music played quietly on the stereo.   

“You’re just tired, with the baby and all.”  He took the silver pitcher from the table and added cream to his coffee mug; white swirling around dark; opposites circling… dancing…finally meeting and blending and becoming something entirely different altogether. 

“We don’t seem to get along.  We’re better when we’re apart.”

“You’ll work it out.  Leave the baby with me for a week.  Take a vacation together.  Open your present.”

I tore the wrapper.  Inside the box were two tickets to Italy.

He grinned.  “You’ve always wanted to go.”

“I’m leaving him,” I said on Opening Day.  Vendors streamed past with hot dogs and pink cotton candy on a stick.  This was the place where dreams were made. 

“Look at that hit,” he said, rising to his feet to watch the home run fly off into the bleachers.

 Against a backdrop of cheering fans and fireworks, I rolled back the sleeve of my shirt to reveal the burns.

“Dad?”  I held out my arm.

His face paled.  “Oh, Sweet Jesus, Lilly.  Did he do that to you?”

I nodded. 

“Why didn’t you tell me before?”  He rose, grabbed my hand and led me from the stands.  “You’re leaving him.  Now.”


This was written for the Trifecta Writing Challenge.  Write a 33-333 word response to the following quote: “What I tell you three times is true.” by Lewis Carroll. You do not have to use the actual quote in your response, but you may if you wish.

Labels:

Writing in the Margins, Bursting at the Seams: Three Times True

Monday, June 25, 2012

Three Times True


“I’m leaving him,” I said on Father’s Day.
 
 
He threaded a worm onto the hook; cast out his line.  He shook his head.  “You young ones are hitched for fifteen minutes before you begin wondering if you’ve made a mistake.  Your mother and me were married for forty-seven years.  We had our share of ups and downs.”  His voice trailed off.  He landed a bass, flapping against the muddy shore as he extracted the hook from its lip.  “Give it time.”  He held up the fish, grinning.  I snapped a picture.  “You fishing some more?”
I watched the bass circle around the bucket of muddy water.  “No,” I said.  “I’m done.”


“I’m leaving him,” I said on my thirty-third birthday.  Hushed waitresses walked by on silent shoes.  Pretty music played quietly on the stereo.   

“You’re just tired, with the baby and all.”  He took the silver pitcher from the table and added cream to his coffee mug; white swirling around dark; opposites circling… dancing…finally meeting and blending and becoming something entirely different altogether. 

“We don’t seem to get along.  We’re better when we’re apart.”

“You’ll work it out.  Leave the baby with me for a week.  Take a vacation together.  Open your present.”

I tore the wrapper.  Inside the box were two tickets to Italy.

He grinned.  “You’ve always wanted to go.”

“I’m leaving him,” I said on Opening Day.  Vendors streamed past with hot dogs and pink cotton candy on a stick.  This was the place where dreams were made. 

“Look at that hit,” he said, rising to his feet to watch the home run fly off into the bleachers.

 Against a backdrop of cheering fans and fireworks, I rolled back the sleeve of my shirt to reveal the burns.

“Dad?”  I held out my arm.

His face paled.  “Oh, Sweet Jesus, Lilly.  Did he do that to you?”

I nodded. 

“Why didn’t you tell me before?”  He rose, grabbed my hand and led me from the stands.  “You’re leaving him.  Now.”


This was written for the Trifecta Writing Challenge.  Write a 33-333 word response to the following quote: “What I tell you three times is true.” by Lewis Carroll. You do not have to use the actual quote in your response, but you may if you wish.

Labels:

17 Comments:

At June 26, 2012 at 2:53 AM , Anonymous Bernie said...

Kelly
Nice. Very nice. I really didn't see it coming. Good work.

 
At June 26, 2012 at 4:35 AM , Anonymous Cameron (CDG) said...

I was waiting for the shoe to drop, but not like that. While he's somewhat dismissive of her wanting to leave, I like that there's this active thread of shared interests between her and her father, a level of comfort that trumps his misunderstanding of the situation.

 
At June 26, 2012 at 5:27 AM , Anonymous Annabelle said...

I wonder if she was working up her courage to tell him the truth that whole time. The father is an appealing character -- the abuse is terrible but the piece as a whole remains hopeful because of the relationship you've built between the father and daughter. Well done.

 
At June 26, 2012 at 5:56 AM , Anonymous jaum said...

Neat! only problem I had was the switch from fishing to a resturant to the ballgame... but to say "I'm leaving him" 3 times you needed 3 diff situations.

 
At June 26, 2012 at 8:34 AM , Anonymous Hannahballistic said...

I sensed this ending only worse...I thought it would be too late. Well written!

 
At June 26, 2012 at 10:20 AM , Anonymous uneven steven said...

well written a very good read :-)

 
At June 26, 2012 at 11:11 AM , Anonymous justkeepinitrealfolks said...

That was great!!!! A father from a different generation trying to want it to all work out when the husband was probably abusing his daughter the whole time.

 
At June 27, 2012 at 7:57 AM , Anonymous Jessie Powell said...

How brave to finally show her father why she had to leave. How sad that it took so long to work up the courage.

 
At June 27, 2012 at 9:31 PM , Anonymous Carrie said...

Geez, maybe she should have shown him a little sooner! I love how you used the prompt with the three events

 
At June 27, 2012 at 9:46 PM , Anonymous JannaTWrites said...

I'm glad he finally "saw" where she was coming from. I don't think Dad wanted to believe something like that could happen.

 
At June 28, 2012 at 1:38 PM , Anonymous Amanda said...

Beautiful work. I love your take... changing the scene three times was very effective, and definitely made it apparent that she had to work up her nerve.

 
At June 28, 2012 at 7:35 PM , Anonymous Renada Styles said...

oy! she should have told him about the abuse in the first place!

 
At June 30, 2012 at 5:40 AM , Anonymous Julie said...

This was great! Chilling, but great. I wasn't sure which way it was going to go (would the dad be right that she should stay, or was she right that she needed to leave) until the very end. I also loved the way you set each scene change so rapidly, but it was easy to follow the characters through the whole thing.

#writeonedge

 
At June 30, 2012 at 8:18 AM , Anonymous Skpadilla said...

Oh. Reading this post gave me powerful and unexpected chills. Effective and graceful post.

 
At June 30, 2012 at 11:34 AM , Anonymous Erin @Momfog said...

I liked the symbolic use of the muddy water and the coffee/creamer. It would have been perfect if there was a similar thing at the ballgame. Still, it was a nice progression with the three events and fit the prompt very well.

 
At June 30, 2012 at 12:35 PM , Anonymous idiosyncratic eye said...

Oh my goodness, my heart when I read of even fictious scenes like this. I think he was a very supportive father all the same and she should have said more before. I wonder how many years this took place over. Beautifully written, it packs such a punch. :)

 
At June 30, 2012 at 11:41 PM , Anonymous My Inner Chick said...

Excellent Post.
If this is non-fiction, I hope to God you left him... <3

 

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