That’s his wife this man is singing with.
I like to give credit where I believe credit is due.
My wife, Megan, is a very talented designer.
Megan designed our entire house. Strangely enough,
Some bucked her, and us, during the entire duration
of the new house construction. Until the end. We
made adjustments. The bigger picture for me is this-
We nearly lost Megan. I’m not supposed to write about it.
Megan had emergency surgery which saved her life.
I’ll never forget finding her lying unconscious while our
son was in his high chair downstairs. Ready to pull himself
over at any moment while I was dialing 911.
The next hour pushed reality. The pain Megan was in,
the ambulance, Gavin crying as they took his mother;
I wasn’t able to get to the hospital in time, the
nurse cried when she saw me, while apologizing saying they
couldn’t wait any longer. We lost more than a few tears that day.
Megan was in full blown recovery for a month. My mother came
to stay with us to help. We still haven’t recovered.
I don’t know that we can. So we focused on the new house.
Whatever Megan wanted, I supported. I tell her she’s talented.
I don’t think she realizes just how talented. We’ve just begun
the process of making the new house a home. I’m thankful Megan
is here with us. The house, the design, Megan’s vision, none of these
dreams would have become realized if we lost her. And of course
the house itself is nothing compared to the health and life of my wife.
Thankfully, Megan was able to make tangible her gorgeous vision of our home.
We had our first drink at the island in the kitchen just after moving in.
I look at what your internal sight created, Megan, and I’m full of new emotion.
So dear, if I am with you in our house, and you see a tear running down my cheek,
it’s because I love that we still have you, and everything that I look at, is you.
I’m so sorry for what you experienced. Forgive me, I’m going to share a bit of you with the world.
I can’t write with a cat in the room. I don’t know how Hemingway did. I like knowing that I don’t need to know everything. I’m not the man who implies to know something when I don’t. I’d much rather say, “I don’t know.” I don’t see the point of lying in the field of knowing. Either I know, or I don’t, the rest is a game. I don’t play those types of games. And, my son just woke up. I can hear him playing in his room. He’s talking to a stuffed animal. Writing time is up! I have a present for him downstairs and I want to watch him open it. Seeing my son and wife happy makes me happy and I know how to do that.
The best stuff hides in plain sight. Such as how I feel while watching my wife walk downstairs in the morning with her tangled messy hair alive on her head, and with little Gavin holding her hand saying, “There’s Daddy! There’s My Daddy!”
The best stuff stirred within my stomach and into my heart pushing forth a sincere smile pointed directly at the people whom I love. After the smile, the stuff yet again sets to begin its hidden journey while hiding in plain sight.
Real men drink whiskey and beer
They get on their hands and knees and
clean the toilet because it needs to be cleaned
just after changing their baby’s shit diaper
while cooing with love and watching
their child’s eyes light up
Real men sit in pubs reading Hemingway
They salute the old brilliant fool by smashing
a shot because they wanted too and because they just did
They come home and stay home for weeks because
they want nothing more than to be with their family
Real men wake up early to make breakfast for their wives
They find the fluffy Maine Coon cat that isn’t allowed to sleep
in the bedroom, and walk as silently as possible as not to wake
their sleeping beauty- place Mr. Fully cat just so, and leave the
room wearing a smile. Check on the baby, race downstairs,
start the coffee, place the eggs on the counter near the stove
along with the English muffins, one package of bacon, butter, And
a can of beer. Because drinking a can of beer while making an
early breakfast before the family is up is fucking amazing.
There is no such thing as a real man. There’s only one thing a man
can be and that’s himself. And when he does that well, he’s able
to love the ones around him fully, wholeheartedly, and life will be good.
I’ve watched restrictions of success cripple people. And couples. Standards ripped them apart. They are left with .5 children and 50% parenting access. All for the glass ceiling. I hope to never forget it’s the simple things that matter most. Being there to see Gavin sit on Megan’s lap while watching a movie. Getting up early to make coffee. Waiting to hear my two hearts come down stairs. “Daddy!” His feet patter at me.
“Morning, Honey.” Her long dark hair is a ruffled mess and it’s incredibly attractive.
It’s the simple things. It really doesn’t take much to make me happy. It never has.
I hope everyone has a good day.
A few months back I was having a beer at the pub
The bartender always spoke highly of her husband
It’s nice to hear
I was reading short stories written by Hemingway
people asked what I was reading
I answered, “Hemingway”
She asked me, “What is it this time”
I said, “Hem”
She rattled off a number of stories written by a number of authors
I told her how good it was to hear how she loved her husband
A few weeks back I stopped at the brew store to buy good beer
A man was standing near the cash register talking
He’d already paid for his beer
he talked a lot
“When I go to a concert the girls love me. Last year this girl asked
if I wanted in on her and her friend.”
I asked, “How’s your wife?”
He told me a few more interesting things about the concert
and how amazing he was with women
“You know what I mean?” he asked..
I replied, “I actually like my wife.”
A few days ago I was having a beer at the pub
I was reading Bukowski
A few people asked what I was reading
I said, “Buk”
The bartender said, “I love his writing.”
I asked how she was and how her husband was
Today I stopped at the brew store for good beer
A man stood next to the cash register not talking
He shook hands with the owner of the brew store
“I’m sorry” the owner said
then the man hugged him
alone and alone and alone
I didn’t ask how his wife was
Should I Call Her
Written by -M. Taggart
‘You’ve been sitting here for an hour thinking about calling her.’
The sun wouldn’t set for another two hours. He liked sitting on the deck and doing this. Watching. Thinking. Drinking beer. What would be the same if he did call?
‘Honestly. Tell me what you’re doing with this? It’s been three days.’
‘It’s a bit like holding onto sleep when you’ve first woken up. You know you’re awake. You want to get up because you know you should be up, but you don’t get up and instead you do nothing.’ Nick said feeling he’d described it as best as he could, but also feeling like he’d left something out.
‘I think you should. There’s your phone. Pick it up. Call. You said she’s interested. How do you know again?’
‘She told me she was. She walked up to me and told me to call her. She took my phone and put her number in the contacts. Smiled and walked away.’
‘And now it’s been three days and you’ve done nothing. Why? Want to sit on this deck forever and look at the sun go down?’
A Blue Jay was screaming. It had just landed in a bush, down below the deck, and now screamed. He wished he knew if the bird was male or female. He should know the difference, thought he had, but now wasn’t sure.
‘Do you have any more of that whiskey? The Whistle Pig whiskey?’
‘I do. Not sure that I want any. It’s where it always is.’ Nick said without looking at Chad. Chad walked into the apartment and came back with two glasses, ice in a dish, and the Whistle Pig whiskey.
‘You know, Nick, you not knowing if you want this whiskey is much like you not knowing if you want to call her. There’s no point in doing nothing other than wasting time. It’s either you do, or you don’t. Once you’ve made that decision, the rest happens. And, you can’t control it.’
A second Blue Jay landed near the first Blue Jay. They both sat on branches near one another and screamed. The sun had dipped. Chad poured two whiskey drinks, added one ice cube to each, and sat down.
‘I don’t like ice in mine.’ Nick said. He let the ice float. Watched as it diluted the whiskey.
‘Nick, she might not be interested anymore. Think of that? Maybe she’s found another guy to give interesting ideas about being interested. You taking three days to call her isn’t ideal. Not in my opinion. Maybe she doesn’t want to hear from you now. Better not call.’
The Blue Jays had stopped screaming. They sat and looked at whatever it is that Blue Jays look at. The sun had dipped slightly more.
‘Maybe she isn’t. Maybe I don’t care. Maybe this deck and this view are all I need.’ Nick knew what he said wasn’t true. He felt his lie inside him.
‘That’s fine. Let’s not talk about it more. Did you see the game last night? The Celtics picked up a good one. He’s 6ft 8 with a wing span of a 7 footer. I think he’s an MVP in the making.’
‘Yea. I guess.’ Nick picked up the whiskey drink. Watched as the ice cube floated to the back of the glass as he tipped it. He sipped the diluted drink. ‘Maybe I’ll call her right now.’
‘Good. What’s her name?’ Chad asked.
‘I shouldn’t have asked. I didn’t know.’
‘It’s O.K. I’m fine.’
‘I wish I had known, I wouldn’t have asked.’
The sun had dipped slightly more. Chad refilled the whiskey in his glass. ‘Do you want more?’
‘Yes.’ said Nick. ‘What do you suppose happens to the male Blue Jay if he loses her? Do you know? I thought I knew. But now I don’t remember.’
thanks for reading
ps, it’s my birthday. i’m thankful to have another with my wife. i didn’t mean to write this. it just happened.
A good woman can correct the brokenness. She will remind a man to wait a little while. Just wait. Time and knowledge can fix what was so severely wrong. If you let it be, you can know her too.
I’m standing on the deck with a cigar and it’s dark now. They say, ‘Don’t blink.’ I blinked taking snap shots because this is how I remember. The deck isn’t large and then there’s the sliding glass doors. These aren’t important. What’s inside is where my heart is.
My wife is in the shower. Our son is asleep. A child I wished to have and now do have. I blink and see a shelf through the sliding glass doors on the left. On the shelf are antique spice tins, small cast iron trays, greenery which I don’t like but she does and she’s best at making a home so they’re there. Blue jars and a metal fire truck which isn’t antique but looks like it is. Above the shelf hangs a large wooden American flag.
On the wall, near the shelf, there is a large wooden star and two wooden butterflies. Megan says we’ll not need the butterflies when we move and to toss them. Her father says to pack them and find a place for them to be.
In the middle of the room there’s an island which shines from multiple cleanings. It’s dark outside and the cigar smoke slips around my vision.
On the kitchen counter stand four empty beer bottles. On the kitchen sink there’s a brush standing upright because it has a suction cup bottom keeping it in place. We use the brush to clean Gavin’s bottles.
Also on the counter is dawn dish detergent and a blue sponge. The faucet is clean and also shining like the island. Then there’s a sugar container with my Boston Red Sox coffee mug sitting on top. I normally don’t leave it on top of the sugar container, but I did today. Then there’s the coffee maker and toaster oven. We leave the oven unplugged. After the toaster oven is a curve in the counter leading to the gas stove. The stove is black and it gleams. After the stove is the stainless steel refrigerator. This is where I once stood and prayed and let tears fall freely. Gavin’s ultra sound pictures were underneath magnets.
My cigar smoke rises. Megan walked from the hallway into the kitchen area with a towel wrapped around her body. She is just out of the shower. She’s turning the lights off. She know’s I’m on the deck smoking my cigar and wants to let me have my moment. She doesn’t know my moment is to never forget. The shelf, the star, the butterflies, the sugar container and her walking in her towel. The home she’s made and the child we have; the sliding glass door and the deck that doesn’t matter leading to me, where I stand and where I know my place.