“Floods,” by Heather Robinson

Apr 20th, 2020 | By | Category: Fiction

Hi, it’s mom. Where are you? Because I’ve got a leak here. It’s pouring down from upstairs into the front hall. Thank God I found two pots under the sink. Why did you hide them there?  They’ve never been there before. Every week you sneak in here and hide my things. I found my toothbrush on top of the piano and my teabags in the bathroom cupboard. I suppose you find that funny. What was I saying. The pots. I put them under the leaks, but I’m getting mighty tired running back and forth dumping these pots into the sink. You’d think if I had a bright daughter she’d be able to maintain this house so it didn’t leak all over the place. And I don’t know why you had the gas turned off. Now I can’t cook. Well I can actually. I’m using the electric waffle iron. It’s not bad for hot dogs except the sauerkraut sticks. Your father would have liked that meal. He was always eating those German, what do you call them, they look like a man’s… oh, never mind, I probably shouldn’t say that. Although I’ve been reading some old letters and you know your father wasn’t such a peach. I should have married Bill Slater instead. I heard Bill also had a stroke but he didn’t die. I bet he’s still alive. Could you find his phone number for me? Wait a minute while I dump another pot. Well, that one almost made it into the sink. And don’t tell me we talked about the gas because we didn’t. I think I’m just going to kill myself. That would solve everything. I’d crash the car but you took that away too. You know Diane didn’t take away her mother’s car.  At 90 she’s still driving. I see her when I take the bus. I know the bus is free and that’s a good thing, but I really do think you should be able to speak English to get on it and not pay. If you are going to live in America you should speak the language. And that’s what I told that dark woman with the cloth around her head when I saw her talking to her daughter in some other language. Another pot to dump. Well now part of the ceiling looks like it’s going to fall. And don’t tell me that I should just move into that place. Over my dead body. I don’t care if they have a singing group and a painting class, I’m not going. You just want to sell my house so you can get the money. I’m already in a chorus remember? Did you forget that? Now look who is forgetting things. So I forgot my music Monday. Big deal. I’m smart enough to figure out that when what’s his name, he has the stick. Anyway, when he lifts his hands up you sing up higher and when his hands go down you sing lower. So that’s what I did.  Simple as that. And stop sending people over to help me. I don’t need any help. I do my own laundry, wash the dishes when they need it, and take a bath every week, which is what I’m going to do right now. By now the tub should be full.


Heather Robinson is a writer of fiction and non-fiction from Fairfield, Connecticut. She’s drawn to dark comedy, and is the author of Dementions, a satire about a young doctor trying to succeed at a cutting-edge clinic whose goal is to shorten the suffering of elderly dementia patients and their family members (yes, read between the lines.) She has been an EMT, a medical assistant, and a hospice volunteer. Many of her essays focus on dementia and end-of-life issues.

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