On Father’s Day Weekend

My father kept an old Yamaha acoustic guitar in his bedroom. Sometimes I ran my child-round fingertips over the strings just to see if it was still in tune. It was, then. I whispered secrets into the sound hole, and it always whispered back. It smelled of dust and spruce and something metallic, like aContinue reading “On Father’s Day Weekend”

Grandma

Out of all the places I’ve lived, only one has ever meant home. My grandparents’ house on South Fruitland Street. It’s not much to look at. Built in 1949, the house is a three-bedroom ranch. A white gable spans the front door and the bay window. My grandmother had the clapboard painted a powder puffContinue reading “Grandma”

Cutting the Cord

I now saw that talking to my parents was pointless. So instead, I typed them an email. I need to talk with you about things that happened in the past. I have a lot of memories I’m just trying to make sense of. I know no one’s perfect, and we all have made mistakes. ButContinue reading “Cutting the Cord”

The Sixth Assault

The summer I am 21 years old, I stand in my parents’ kitchen with the lights down. My mother is running errands. My brother is out with friends. I envy him. Our parents never give him the shakedown when he gets home. They never tell him he was gone too long. They never tell himContinue reading “The Sixth Assault”

The Abuser in All of Us

Last night at Elliott Bay Book Company, author Val Brelinski read from her debut novel, The Girl Who Slept with God, and posed an impossible question: Is it possible to love another human being–parents, siblings, children, spouses–and not in some way damage the other person? Or is that part of the nature of intimate relationships?Continue reading “The Abuser in All of Us”