"My mother says she can remember the snap. I wasn't there, / but I can hear it, too . . . "
I’ll tell you what, Papaw was a drunk, the sweetest man alive.
Sober: A good husband; a loving father; he worked hard regardless,
but I’ve never heard tell if he was able to keep a job
or if the family moved because of his drinking. On a binge, he beat Granny.
He’d come home at 2am and beat her and she’d have to fry a chicken
or fix something for him and his friends, her brothers, to eat. He beat her
with his belt. My mother says she can remember the snap. I wasn’t there,
but I can hear it, too, the way it caught the back of Granny’s legs,
the way she whimpered don’t. I can see the thin cotton layer
of her nightgown that may as well not even been there.
I hear the snap, too, almost every day.