Hour stretches into hour, mile into mile, and Jordan finds himself unable to sleep as he rests his head against the bus’ window. He would have flown home, but he hates air travel. It is not that he is afraid of flying, but the busy, rude, loud commuters and agents are more than his mild social anxiety disorder can bear. The bus, crowded as it is, is easier. A few minutes of shuffling before boarding and you can drift off once you are in your seat. At least, that is the theory.
The last time he went home was bad. He and his pop got into the same old argument, and it ended with Jordan saying some things he now very much regretted. A tumor, mom told him over the phone, in Pop’s head pushing hard against a bunch of blood vessels. No one knew it was there until it was too late. Now Pop has a week, maybe two. He has been told that his father is on some pretty strong pain medication, and often does not even recognize his mother. He wants to say he is sorry, but will Pop even know? Will it matter?
Choking on his emotions he refuses to cry here on this bus in the middle of fly-over country. He has learned to hide himself from the public eye, especially in places like this. Funny that it has never been one of the struggles between him and his father. As angry as he can get with his Pop, he still remembers warmly the day his dad socked a coworker for calling Jordan a pansy. Obviously dad loves him, and he loves his dad, so why do they always fight, why is it only now that Jordan appreciates how his dad has always been there for him?
Such silly little differences. Pop does not understand that Jordan does not care about having a house of his own, or this car or that. For his part Jordan never understood, until now, that those “stupid material concerns” were not what his father cared about. He wanted to make sure Jordan was safe, and secure. So many trivial misunderstandings. Miles apart and still right there.
Unable to sleep, Jordan pulls out the copy of Don Quixote Pop bought him for graduation. He smiles, just a little, at the poetry of it.
- Do Sancho Panzas Trump Don Quixotes? (samirchopra.com)
- Just Do It. (daughterlanguage.com)
- Creative Writing Tip: DO listen to others, for dialogue’s sake! (crimsonleague.com)
- Friday Nite Poetry: Quanta (handofananke.com)