“When I awoke I had no knowledge of the day before. I don’t know who I am or where I come from. You have to help me to remember who I am. I want to remember what kind of life I had.”
The dog wagged his tail as if he understood every word Spencer said.
“You talking to that mongrel again, Spencer?” His mother banged on the bedroom door. “I told you, dogs don’t belong in the house. Open this door right now.”
Spencer pushed the dog out the window and gingerly opened the door. He peeked at his mother. Always haggard, so ugly, so scary, he thought.
“Who you talking to, boy?”
“M.Myself,” he mumbled. “I.m … um … I was p.practising my l.lines.”
“Lines. Boy, you think you an actor or something. What lines you talking ’bout?”
“F.For the school p.play.”
“School play, you say. School play my foot. You don’t even go to school. Which fool putting that kind of garbage in your head? Is that Austin boy, always teaching you things you weren’t born to do.”
“H.He say, h.how I gots t.talent.”
“He don’t know piss about you. I am your mother, and you have no talent. You’re a Fischer, and Fischer men don’t go to school, they work the land, catch fish, clean cow shit and pig shit. That is tradition. You can’t change it. Now get outsidde and help your father clean the pig pen.”
Spencer’s face fell. He stared at her through glassy eyes.
“Why you full tears in your eyes like a sissy?”
Whap. Her right hand connected with the back of his head. “You think I want to raise a little girl, eh? Get out of here, straighten your back and walk like a man.”
Spencer ran out the house. Tears streamed down his cheeks. “I am leaving this house tonight.”