FICTION FEAR: FOUR EXAMPLES / Gordon Lish MY DAUGHTER called from college. She is a good student, excellent grades, is gifted in any number of ways. "What time is it?" she said. I said, "It is two o'clock." the clock that said it's two." "All right," she said. "It's two now. Expect me at four--four by "Good," she said. "It was my watch," I said. It is ninety miles, an easy drive. At a quarter to four, I went down to the street. I had these things in mind: look for her car, hold a parking place, be there waving when she turned into the block. At a quarter to five, I came back up. I changed my shirt. I wiped off my shoes. I looked into the mirror to see if I looked like someone's father. I think I looked like a vain man who had things on his heart. SHE PRESENTED herself shortly after six o'clock. "Traffic," I said. "No," she said, and that was the end of that. After supper, she complained of insufferable pains, and doubled over on the diningroom floor. "My belly," she said. "What?" I said. She said, "My belly. It's agony.
The Missouri Review – University of Missouri
Published: Oct 5, 1980
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