Semper Fi

J M Jackson
Jan 20 · 1 min read

The boys' father had come back from the war broken. They had missed him. But then they didn’t.
They were twins. Opposites, not mirror.
Their father started off talking to himself and staring blankly at people conversing with him. The wrong way round. But not for him.
His reality wasn’t ours, yours.
His hair grew long and his beard straggly.
One day he left.
I’ll admit now that I’m his son.
And my twin is dead.
I am twenty-three.
People shake their heads and comment on the tragedy of it all. Our father was the tragedy.
I’ve heard that twenty vets commit suicide a day, in the US at least. But then, I’ve heard a lot of things.
My brother tracked our dad down a couple of years after he had left. Seemed to be doing better. Meds and things. Stable enough.
And then he wasn’t.
Only took an instant and he was gone again. This time for good.
My brother didn’t understand it. Decided to follow our father.
Now we’re the family known for suffering two suicides in two days.
Suffering’s the right word.
It blankets most lives.

J M Jackson

Written by

Husband and father who writes about the human condition while trying not to come across too Kafkaesque at parties. He doesn't actually go to any parties.