The house is quiet. It has been quiet, as you may expect, as I am the only one here. I spend my days cleaning and dusting, no time for television, I find it too hard to concentrate. My son, Simon's room, is always impeccably kept. Neither my husband, should you know, his name was Walter, could bear, I suspect, as with most grieving couples to disassemble a lost child'sbelongings.
My son's name was Simon and I wonder still, wonder aloud to myself many times, why he did what he did. We both did. Walter was quiet and would become irritated, his face reddenning when I pondered the question. I felt he didn't care but he was simply dealing with things in a Walter sort of way. It was poetic justice, Walter, eating that bullet. It was Walter's gun that Simon, my Simon put to his mouth.
I told the man not to leave them loaded. I told him many, many times not to leave them loaded. I anticipated an accident, certainly not my son to be found a victim of his own innocent devices. He was thirteen years old and despite the normal angst any teenager faces, I still often wonder aloud what drove him that day to do what he did. Walter never did. He kept his emotions in a cage.
Was it the taunting of mean spirited peers? Simon was a small boy, smaller than most and not much of an athlete but he had a smile that could light up a room.
Everyone speaks highly of their sons and daughters to be sure and I expect one might bore of hearing all the good things that Simon had to offer. How many teenagers dutifully did their dishes without asking? His room I kept impeccable because that's the way he kept it. And he could write. At family gatherings, though Simon had no income to buy presents, everyone would gather around to hear the cards that he would write himself.
I'm repeating myself but it's all I can do, I thought that day that shooting him would allow me to forgive or forget but that has never happenned. I told him not to keep the guns loaded. I told him over and over again.
I've been dreaming about Simon. Seeing him do what he did. Covered in blood, oh God, the scene intensifies every night it seems. Over and over again. Screaming my name. In the cold silence of my king sized bed I awake night after night covered in sweat. I do not dream of Walter. Fuck Walter. But I'm seeing Simon. Vividly. I've stopped cleanig his room, leaving the door clasped. I'm not going to sleep upstairs anymore, go upstairs. In the afternoon, now, I hear Simon calling me.