I had arrived to the hospital in labor, and waddled into the emergency room like I was about to claim a lottery prize. Instead, I got Claudia in my room. My baby Liam died before I delivered him.
My brother killed himself one Saturday morning, just to spite my mother.
At thirty-six she has never had a man fall asleep with his head on her shoulder. She has never been touched before. Not like that. Not by a man. Or a woman.
A curly-haired man in a black suit stood on a hilltop, holding hands with a woman who floated above him wearing a dress the color of grape juice.
“That’s Marc Chagall and me.”
He sits out there in his rowboat, mouth half open, the Chicago skyline rising and falling behind him. I walk on my knees though the water. Inching closer, slipping farther out into the lake.
What he was kicking, with a ferocity more like assault than play, was a small peach basket.
My father was disappointed by my inability to ride a two-wheeler by the age of six. He never said so directly, but I could tell.
Grace Churchill’s daughter died for the twenty-seventh time.
Persephone Samaras can’t wait to escape the oppressive heat of the pizza ovens. She’s off to see her cousin Vasili in the hospital, that sterile, air-conditioned sanctuary.
Seconds after my mother died, she began work in heaven on a little play titled “Naked in Bed with Eleanor Roosevelt.”