A Lifelong Act of Toaster Revenge
To be anywhere near my grandma Anna is to conspire in the performance of her body: to sense the blood warmth radiating from her skin like it’s your own; to feel in your bones the clack of plastic bracelets she sounds with every jerk and gesture of her hands and arms. To ride shotgun along the raw, resonant edge of her voice.
Easter Sunday at Aunt Kay’s, Anna’s bawling after however many highballs: wailing that she’s been selfish, just a rotten no-good grandmother to my brother Walter and me.
John, she says with that voice. Get me my purse.
She pulls a Kleenex from it, wipes her eyes and blows her nose. She finds her checkbook and writes us each one for five dollars; she tears it from the spine: zzzhhip … zzzhhip and says Now don’t lose this. She never tells us she loves us, but that five bucks—that pity gift after long neglect—feels like the realest expression of care. A resurrection.
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