“You’re hopeless! Nothing anyone does is good enough for you. Don’t you see how you’re destroying this family?”
Glass flew by my head and in the moment between shatter, I could almost see through to a better outcome. But gravity didn’t leave me enough time to consider hope before glass made contact with the wall in an explosive production.
“I want you out of here! I can’t take your chaos anymore! Get OUT!”
I sat on an upturned crate by the bar’s dumpster, debating my existence and how some things never really changed. Even though I had tried desperately, after a brutal year, the divorce papers still showed up on my doorstep.
Even though I did the program, the steps, the apologies, I remained unforgiven. I still turned up by the trash of a bar.
And I wasn’t even drinking this time. But it didn’t matter.
My life continued to shatter; the splinters had been embedded long ago.
- - -
A bottle was long empty by morning though. The trash got to me. And maybe the view of all the other drunks stumbling out at last call. A part of me knew that I’d still end up a bum like them. It was inevitable. And hey, I guess my wif-ex was right, just like always.
I couldn’t commit. Well, not to anyone but a drink.
My tongue felt blistered the whole time.
My head pounded as if all the times I hadn’t drank came back with a vengeance.
I got weak.
I stumbled like the rest of them.
But somehow, my legs led me to my brother’s doorstep. Easily an hour’s walk away. I swayed in hesitation and exhaustion, debating if I was even worth being answered to. My fist finally decided for me, and I thumped it hard on the boring brown door.
It took quite a lot of banging before the porch light turned on, but the bulb that lit finally brought some relief and hope.
“I fucked up again man,” I groaned into the doorframe. I could see him standing there pausing, contemplating whether I was worth opening up to.
“I know I’m pathetic man, just, you can’t give up on me too. C’monnn. Please.”
Logan finally turned the deadbolt, the click registering in my mind as possible acceptance. But before I could even see his disappointed face, he tossed something out past me, then shut the door and the lights and left.
I turned to see what was thrown, it lay on the lawn begging for company too. A one-by-3 stick of wood. Another stick in the mud, or grass I guess.
Even in my state of despair and blurriness, I knew what Logan was saying.
Come back when you have something to show for it.
I hope you enjoyed this story I wrote for Makenzie Davis’ Ekphrastic Story Challenge!
It was pretty fun participating, and I’m glad I actually did it. I don’t often participate in a lot of challenges, but have been struggling with inspiration lately. So finishing this story definitely gave me a bit of a boost.
I wasn’t too sure how to approach the image, and I also didn’t want to write a story that was too long. More of snapshots to a snapshot if you catch my drift~
If you enjoyed this story, you’re always welcome to leave a heart, a comment, or even a tip. Any support for you is always graciously appreciated. Your engagement and interactions help small writers feel seen and that our stories matter.
Thank you as always~