I Cook the Sausages

By Anthony J. Langford

Wwebhy am I here again? There’s a man, walking past my house. I never seen him before. Where you from, I said. He said South Korea. Silly man. I meant where from, round here? He keeps walking but… Thinks I’m crazy. I’m not. I like to be friendly. No one’s friendly. Much anymore. Except the man across the street. I forget his name. He’s not there today. You know how? His car’s gone. Yep. He is away. I hope he comes back. One day. What day is it? It’s a nice day. Sunny. I like the sunny days. Sit in the sun. I’m not being lazy. My wife says, You’re much too lazy. No I said. I just get tired. She doesn’t listen. She’s making lunch. But I do the sausages. I still do good sausages. My daughter likes to cook her steak. She says I can’t do steak her way. I can do my own steak but I just like sausages. Before I liked the steak. Before. Hmm. I wish she hurry up. I want the sausages now. My daughter. When’s Sandy coming? I yell that. My voice is loud. I like my voice. My wife doesn’t speak back. Hey! She should answer. I’m outside. She won’t answer. She’s making the lunch. There’s a car. I know it. It’s white. Sandy’s car is white. It stops. Here. Hey! It’s Sandy. She gets out. That’s my daughter. She’s beautiful.

Hi Dad.

Hey. My Daughter. You’re beautiful. I put my arms out. She falls on me. She smells real good. My daughter smell. She said some words but I’m talking about the baseball. I like to watch it. On the TV. My wife says I didn’t use to like it. I don’t remember. I like it now.

We walk inside. She says I’m squishing her hand. I didn’t even know. Haha. That’s funny. I tell my wife. I squished her hand. She hugs my daughter. They talk at each other. They really talk. They do this before too. Like the other times. I don’t really listen. They talk too fast. I just like to look. At my daughter. I see my wife every time. Every time? All the time. See. I can think properly sometimes. My daughter comes over. She says,

You’re smiling.

I have to feel my face. Yes. I am. She rubs my tummy. Says, It’s big dad. It’s getting bigger.

I say yes. It’s big. It’s like a big bread. Do we have bread?

Yes, says my wife. I like to cut the big bread. I like the big piece. My wife says,

You should start cooking.

The bread?

No. The sausages.

Good. I don’t like bread cooked. I go outside. The back part. My daughter is with me. She says,

How are you?

I says I’m right here. She says,

That’s good. Of course you are dad.

She’s smiling but she is sad. That is my daughter. I can tell she is sad. She rubs her face. I say, You are sad. She shakes her head. She pats my arm like a dog. I’m not a dog. I say that. She laughs. I smile. She has the steak. I have to turn the BBQ on. She wants to do it. But is my job. I say, I do it.

Okay dad.

I turn the thing and push. Click Click Click Phoosh! There. Easy. See? I do it.

That’s good dad.

She has the bottle of yellow stuff. You do that stuff, I say. I cook the sausages. Where are the sausages? I yell that out, two times. Then my wife brings the sausages. This is my job. My daughter. She looks fat. I tell her. She smiles. Rubs my arm. She says,

Don’t you remember? I’m pregnant.

I say, you mean like a baby.

She says yes.

I say, You had the sex. She laughs and says,

Don’t worry.

I say, Who was the man. I don’t like him. I might kill him. She says,

I’m married. Don’t you remember?

I say, Was it Before? She says

Yes.

I say I don’t remember too much Before. She says

I know.

I say, Where is the married man who gave you the sex. She says

you attacked him last time. Don’t worry. He forgives you

I say, I don’t remember. She rubs my arm again. I look at my arm. I think she’s trying to rub something off. But it must be gone now.

My wife comes out. Then the dog barks. Not my dog. My dog is good. The dog at the back, the little one, the fence but other side. Shut up! Mutt dog! I hate that dog.

Sssh dad.

Bloody dog. It should be dead. I yell that out.

Dad. Ssh. Stop it.

I say, It’s a bloody dog. She keeps talking but the dog barks barks barks and I want to talk to my daughter with the nice quiet and sunny day. Bloody mutt dog. I go down the step. I pick up the ball that is my dog’s and throw it hard. Hits the fence. I want to kill the dog! My wife says,

Come back and cook dear. You need to eat so you can take your pills.

I say I don’t want the pills. They make me fall asleep and I can’t watch baseball. She says,

You know you have to.

I say no! My daughter has the tears. I say, Look. You make my daughter sad! My wife say,

It’s not your fault, but you need to take the pills because you could hurt yourself. Or others.

She always says that. But now I am mad. I got the Really Bads. I go and grab the rake. My wife says,

What are you doing?

I say, I have to make the dog shut up. I go out the gate but something sticking at my elbow. I swish it off. Must be the branch. My wife is sad now. She is with the crying and yelling really bad. Right behind me. How she get there? She has hands on her face. My daughter is here. She looks at me with bad thoughts. My daughter. She doesn’t like me. Why don’t you like me now, I say. She says,

Because you hit Mum!

I say, I didn’t. She says,

Yes you did. Oh my God Dad!

Then I remember the branch on my elbow. Was that my wife? Do I hit her? Like an accident. My daughter says,

Yes. Oh God.

Then I yell really loud and I run out my house and along the street. I can’t run too fast now. That’s cause of the Hit on my head. It made me slow. And fat. I got the tummy. Like big bin. I can’t remember when. I forget things. And sometimes people get angry at me. Or sad. Like now. I don’t like it.

Not your fault.

My wife like to say much.

But you must take the pills.

I don’t like the pills. I want to remember Before. Everyone telling me I was better Before. When I was the Teacher Person. But I don’t remember. I’m running down the street now. There’s a metal thing in the road. I remember. The sign. It says keep right. I can still read. I don’t understand keep right. I hate it. It thinks I’m stupid. It says I’m stupid. It’s trying to make me stupid. I hit it with the rake. It makes a big sound. I hit it again. I like the sound. But I want to break it. I hate it. I hit it again. And then another time. I got the Really Bads. I just want to break it. There’s a car. It’s stopped. People are looking at me. I yell. They should go away. They in the car go backwards. Good. Bloody idiots. They turn and go away. I go to the sign and hit it really hard because I’m still strong and not stupid. Not crazy. I just don’t like things. Signs. Keep right. You keep the left. I got the Bads. The Really Bads. I’m not remember why I’m mad. I hit the sign and the rake go in half. I drop it on the ground. Look. Two little rakes. It looks funny.

Brrooooowwwwhhh

That noise I know it. Up. It’s one of the planes. Really small. Far up. But the big jet. Near the cloud. I was in one. Plane. Not cloud. Stupid. It was Before. I think. I went somewhere. Far away. I was in there for a long time. Went somewhere. But I don’t remember. Someone wanted my money. He had metal in his hand. Like a baseball bat. But metal. He got angry. They say he hit me. But I don’t remember. I forget things too much.

I’m in the road. That’s funny. Why am I in the road? I don’t feel happy. I want to be home now.

Ah look. That’s my daughter. She’s coming at me. In the street. She is beautiful. I should go talk to her. I have to tell her. I think she got fat.

___

Anthony J. Langford lives in Sydney Australia. He writes stories, poetry and makes video poems. His story “The Long Jetty” featured in the Verandah 25th Anniversary Edition. Some of his recent publications include Ink, Sweat & Tears, Mused, Citizens for Decent Literature, Crack the Spine and Eunoia Review. He works in television and has made short films, some of which have screened internationally. His novella, Bottomless River is out now through Ginninderra Press. A poetry collection, Caged without Walls will be released in 2013.

A wide selection of his work can be found at www.anthonyjlangford.com


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