POV

Triptych

In the story, there were no tears, no crumbling toddler face, your mom’s screams edited out

Story by Brendan Lynaugh - lynaughb@gmail.com Photos by Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci


Meteors

We were out the door for an early dinner at our Sunday Italian restaurant, the one we’d go to less than a year later for the final time, with godparents and extended family, the first dinner without Dad. But before he could beep-beep open the car, the wrinkled voice of our neighbor brought us back. She pointed.

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

A meteor shower was expected that week in north Jersey and the metropolitan area in general was looking up. Plenty of jobs and my brother and I would be off to college soon. She pointed again and we saw a fuzzy light streaming across the skies. We were wowed. We hadn’t noticed.

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci


Minutes later, from the front seat, Dad shook his head. It’s just the 747 from Newark everyday at—checked his watch—6:15. Don’t tell her boys, Mom said. And we wouldn’t dare. Not quite grown, but old enough to know there were only these moments.
Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci


Stories

I.
Grandad lost track of you among New York skyscrapers. Old enough to walk, but too young to remember, you kept exploring, eyes lit until the moment when everything must have become strange. In the story, there were no tears, no crumbling toddler face, your mom’s screams edited out; nightly news endings glossed over in the telling. Only a bearded policeman on horseback returning you to your mother.

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci


II.
In the glow of your mobile, budget maps don’t make sense and Eastern European streets, unbombed and Byzantine, look too much the same past midnight. With each unknown intersection, your almost-a-beard face—not crumbling like men-on-horse statues, pride still etched in green stone—wants to fall. You try to force the story forward—backdrop with pubs, campsites or first dates—to hear the telling over laughter. Tightening your buckle, you grimace and step through pools of gutter-water flowing between the cobblestones.
Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

Photo © Muge Karamanci

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