I’M ONLY HAPPY WHEN IT RAINS

MELISSA FITE JOHNSON

 

After the Garbage song
 
 
My song came on. I jerked the volume up,
stomped on the gas, sang along: Pour your misery down.
My only comfort is the night gone black.
Since his laryngectomy, Dad couldn’t talk.
From the passenger seat, he studied me. I didn’t want that.
I didn’t want him there. I wanted to shout into a void.
I wished Mom’s Toyota were a rocket shooting me
out of this town. I had to chauffeur Dad around—
since his strokes, he couldn’t drive.
Everything so unfair. Pour your misery down.
 
The song ended. I’d cried through the last chorus:
I’m riding high upon a deep depression. I’m only
happy when it rains. With my sleeve, I wiped snot
off my upper lip, sneaked a glance at my dad.
He gestured to his paralyzed side—his right hand
a claw resting in his lap, his right leg limp
against the car door. He pointed to his chest,
mouthed, Me, too. He struggled to sit up. Me, too.

 
 

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