Prose and Prosody

A serial fiction archive by Chris Rodriguez.

Debra O’Vale

[SMS] #02 A young woman is faced with her father’s demise, and in her grief, notices something is off. 336 Words, ~1:41 on average Published on 2015-08-04 22:20:32 -0400

It rained upon the day of my return.
I did not want to come, but they insist
I be here for this time of loss, and grieve.
My dad and I were not the closest friends:
I'd chosen school in part to get away.
But then, the news came round... that he had died.

The news arrived so quick after he'd died,
I did not think to send word in return.
It would be better that I put away
my work and leave. Though they may all insist
I let the news sink in amongst my friends,
I know it would not let me start to grieve.

I need to see his face before I grieve...
to let the truth sink in: My dad has died.
And nothing here could let me show my friends
how hurt I was to know he'd not return,
And how struck deaf I'd been when he'd insist
I shouldn't stay out here, so far away.

The train I'd booked had now just set away
towards the city that I sought to grieve.
Before I'd rest I knew I would insist
that I have proof: I'd see that he had died.
And then when I could not safely return
to school, I'd send this letter to my friends.

"Diane, Marcelle, Joanne, Estelle... My friends...
I'm sorry, but, for now, I'll be away.
A month or so will do, then I'll return.
I need this time, this month alone to grieve.
My father was too young to just have died.
They say it's fine, but I need to insist

they look again. I must try to insist
they figure out what killed him quickly. Friends,
My father was in too good health to've died
Of some mundane disease. I'll be away
until I've figured out why I must grieve
for him right now. Goodbye. I will return."

I must insist that I now stay away
From my new friends as I pretend to grieve.
My father died, and now I, late,  return.