Frozen Heart

I got this new flannel off Amazon yesterday and I’m wearing it to work this morning. It’s black and white and really brings out the color of my skin, I think.

My father and I used to love shopping for plaid, flannel shirts at Goodwill, and I’m pretty sure he’d try to guilt me out of this one I’m wearing if he were still here.

Dad, I’m not sure what you want me to say. You knew it was bound to happen eventually, you had that heart condition and the drinking wasn’t slowing down, so, are you really surprised you died the way you did?

The way I heard it described was that they found you in a flannel shirt and jeans and your socks weren’t all the way on. You must have looked like one of Santa’s little helpers on your side in the fetal position, reaching for the phone across the living room, before your heart froze you solid. I wish you were here still.

We’d order grinders with hots from down the street, and watch movies all day, two of our favorite things to do. To be honest I still order delivery every weekend to celebrate us, I think.

According to the experts you got out of bed sometime in the early morning and started dressing. I sometimes wonder if you started dressing during your heart attack or just before, if the thought of them finding you in your skivvies was just too much so you had to make sure you looked good with one of those sweet flannel shirts I picked up for you across the street.

I imagine they moved you very carefully, while talking about the game or about how cute your pug was while it ran in circles around the apartment, and on each revolution stopped to bark at the front door it kept hearing someone knocking on. Like I told you often while you were still alive, because life and happiness and love goes on with or without you in the world, Dad, you should have flipped it off, and sobered up, kicking and screaming like the baby you really were, then tried to find your balance and walk in it.

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