From the window I see her bend to the roses
given for our late wedding: Love, Honor,
First thing, we asked if we had to go to church. My mother said no, but that we should say a good Act of Contrition. We kneeled on our bunk beds, myself on the bottom one and my brother above, and we had a race to see who could say it faster. My mother called down the hall and said it was no good. We started over, this time screaming each syllable until she finally told us to shut up. Then my brother and I ate cereal and my little sister did decoupage at the breakfast table. The smoke hung low and swirled as my parents talked about when they were young. After the dishes were cleared, we visited Nan and Pop in the garage. Nan gave us lady fingers, and Pop played his wind-up drummer, Indian Joe, and tried to make us repeat curse words we had never heard before.