Sobering Happiness

Alcoholism, Youth and Family

Sobering happiness

breaks the sharp

sweat from my father’s

brow as he grips the

porcelain round, squeezing

every ounce of 

relief from it.

Intermittent drastic

reductions of himself; the

mirror only projecting part

of the drunken story,

the other half only 

noticeable under the

long-sleeved 5th grade

uniform of my younger self.

Sobering happiness

intrudes on my suburban 

soliloquy as men in blue 

empty orange bottles full

of my late father’s vitamins;

he won’t need them now as

I hold my mother’s hand.

Two doors shut and we

speed away; the lights flash

and decibels blare but I am

deaf to the sound, ears still 

ringing, head pounding.

My mother looks at me as

I stare at her third finger, wishing,

urging her to shed the little weight

that bound us all together. 

The End

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