With June heat and Jack as catalysts I finally said the words it took to end my marriage, to break the bonds of nineteen years, to speak the truth about the death of my heart. I remember the sun as over-bright– the color off, like an old film, the speed jerky from adrenaline and too much alcohol. I could never have imagined the force it took to dislodge him– the arguments about dishes and records, his intransigence, my harshness because he would not hear me any other way. He asked me for boxes when he left, and when I offered none he carried things to his car by the armload for days, leaving his empty office like a pissed-off tenant, the carpet littered with mail and coffee stains a worthless stereo in the closet. Weeks later, the reaction came– In the swelter of September I took an ax, hurled the stereo out on my driveway, and smashed it into splinters and mangled wire. Afterward, I leaned over the wreckage, spent– a free radical, sweating and crying in the heat.
Sharon Wright Mitchell studied literature and education at the University of Georgia. She contributed to I AMSTRENGTH by Blind Faith Books and has been published in The Wild Word. She is a teacher living in Athens, GA.