Opthalmology with Dad

Sherraine Pate Williams

I always tried to bite my father’s face like when you’re hangnail picking. Only he wasn’t soft like ancient alien astronaut theories. And it was not really his face, not really. But his eyeball galled me like the fall of distant bells, the faintest drone of bees. So one day, I chawed that eye right out, or maybe it was the right eye out, but it felt wrong to me. It felt like a sucking pop dropped dangling like some participle. I craved to stay there in his arms holding him tight like the rope around an elephant’s leg. His other blue eye stared down at me. The whites, shot red and jaundiced, hinted at the sea after you’ve asked too many favors of the salt. I’ll always remember his husky screams, like the whispers of cicadas at sunset. But, in truth, I couldn’t help myself. I always hated being shaped like an apple in there.

About the Work

Sherraine Pate Williams

Sherraine Pate Williams’ poems have most recently appeared or are forthcoming in Measure, Zymbol, Antiphon, Deep South Magazine, and The Avatar Review. A native of Memphis, Tennessee, she now makes her home in Kentucky with her husband and two children.  She is an MFA candidate in poetry at Murray State University’s creative writing program and currently teaches basic literacy skills to adults full time for a local adult learning center.

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