Monday, April 23, 2007

Entry #23

Fertilizer Becomes Her
by Bob Dawson


Poised and confident, Dressed in Armani, she stood in the kitchen doorway looking at the filthy unwashed dishes in the sink. In the living room, now an ironic label, the old man was dead, surrounded by yellowed newspapers, empty beer cans, and assorted bits of decaying food products. As if to make the scene performance art, his unshaved and disheveled appearance complimented the surrounding framework. She had called 911.

She lifted her gaze to look out the kitchen window. The half fallen, once white curtain blocked the bottom branches of the ash tree from which the old man had time and again cut the switches used on the effeminate boy she had been. All that could be seen now was the vibrant spring growth budding from the upper branches, brilliant green, even through the coating of grime. The sight dispersed the miasma of despair that had begun to once again envelope her, as if the old man, even in death, could still control.

She felt a great sense of release. Long before he escaped to become she, the old man had ceased to be her father. He no longer had power over her.

As she emerged from the house to wait in the yard, she took one last look back at the filth that represented the old man’s life, and the detritus of her past. If anything, she felt grateful. “Some people,” she thought, thinking of the house and the old man, “would call it dirt. I call it fertilizer.”

10 comments:

Katherine Napier said...

I think this piece is great, Bob. The concept has depth, the flow is smooth, and the idea is complete in this short format. Nice job.

Scott said...

Interesting take on the photo, and I just love that title, which the ending neatly ties into.

Jaye Wells said...

I liked this a lot. So many great lines and an original take on a common theme.

Joni said...

Vocab points for "miasma."

A truly original piece. Well written with just the perfect dash of dry humor. Nice job.

suzanabrams said...

A bit of a chill at the end. Nice.

Beth said...

Now I have to look up miasma, but besides that, I enjoyed reading it! =)

Nothingman said...

like the heading. the story seems the aftermath of a sex change operation. !!yikes! what is the fertilizer then ;) double yikes!!!

N

bekbek said...

This is beautiful and going on my favorites list. I liked that "he became she" provides context for a complex relationship, without over-playing it. Subtle and clear at the same time. Nice!

Susan Flemming said...

Great title that is echoed in the final line of the story.

jason evans said...

What a wonderful last line! A perfect notion to launch this character into her next stage in life.