Death of an Uncle

Screenshot 2017-04-27 09.17.30.png

The man lying in the bed doesn’t look anything like my Uncle Joe. His head is all swelled up, and a long, bloody cut runs from his forehead, over his eye, and down to his chin. There’s another cut over his nose, a deep gash across his forehead, and a couple more roost on his chin. Mother comes up behind me with a fresh washcloth and scares the tar outta me.

“What happened to him?”

“Punk Squares and Hammit Bashem beat ’em with knucks and a tar tool,” she says.

“What fer?”

“Don’t rightly know fer sure.”

“When’s he gonna get better?” I whisper.

“Ain’t sure he is, Cono.” I don’t really want to know why Punk and Hammit beat up my Uncle Joe. I’m afraid to.

Three days later, after plenty of moaning, my Uncle Joe dies. Earlier that morning, when he took his last breath, Aunt Nolie covered him with a Blanket and cried, “He didn’t deserve this.” She wipes her nose and eyes with the back of her hand. Except for his cuts and bruises, Uncle Joe was whiter than a bed sheet.

Now some men in a big black car come to take away my stiff-as-a-board uncle.

Excerpt from No Hill for a Stepper, my father’s story

1 thought on “Death of an Uncle

Your response is a pleasant gift

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s