I must have been younger than ten. These were the days of unanswered questions and rooms that dwindled in size and quantity the more we were tossed about the Greater Los Angeles Area. My father had lost his job, again, and I’d forgotten what he was doing for money when the man with the cigarette arrived on our door.
Was I home alone with my father, or were my mother and other siblings with us? It shouldn’t be difficult to remember, for we were always together, separated only by school or the occasional extracurricular activity, but for whatever reason, I see just my father and me in our cramped second-level apartment. It was summer, perhaps, as the air conditioner was on, although inconstant, and I can feel the sweaty doze of day when sunlight fans downward and blanches one’s musings, with nothing to do but await my older self’s dubious remembrance. […]