Piece III : Light of My Eyes

Please listen whilst you read: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R13jJn4Nf2E


“I took some surveys today. Christina always comes into the store with her mother.  She says that when she sees the sea she gets sad.  She remembers that when she was eight, she went to the beach with her family early in the morning to avoid traffic.  On one stretch of road, there was a tire.  It was rolling towards them.  Everyone was quiet, because they couldn’t tell where it came from.  Then, they saw a woman’s shoe, a beach chair, an open suitcase with clothes flying out of it. Then, they saw an overturned car and her mom told her to look toward the sea and say a prayer for those people.”


I came to tell you this:

It doesn’t matter to us what you do on your planet–


“What did you tell Lisa?  She keeps asking me about memories.”

“That’s strange!… Yesterday I watched an old movie again.  Its about a woman who realizes that her husband is a stranger.  He isn’t the same anymore.  One, evening, she decides to follow him and she finds out he’s an alien.  They talk about it at home and he tells her what he really is.  And he tells her that he doesn’t want to go back to his planet, that he likes life on Earth.  He discovered something that he doesn’t want to give up.  The emotions that Earthlings feel, he started feeling them too.  He had fallen in love with her.”

“What’s the catch?”

“She doesn’t want him at all….

He organizes an expedition to the aliens’ base, he reports them…

He’s killed.”

“It’s a sad story…




I had never seen my father.  Actually, I saw him until I was three, then he left for Argentina.  I couldn’t even remember what his face looked like.  If my mother hadn’t spread pictures all over the house…

We waited for him to come back.

Sometimes he would write and send money.  My mother said that he would come back soon.  She loved him…she trusted him.  She wanted me to think of nothing but my studies.  She never liked me reading science fiction, she wanted me to keep my feet on the ground.  She feared I’d become like her, never thinking about herself.

She was beautiful.  She had a lot of admirers.  Among them all, there was one that was different.  He was a travelling salesman, he sold linens.  He had a big beautiful car full of linens–blankets, sheets.

He was always going to a new city.  He was kind.  You could tell he was in love with my mother.  She cared about him, but she never wanted him.  She kept waiting for my father, and it hurt him.  He took us to the movies, restaurants. Back home, they referred to salesman as “travelers”.  When I asked my mom what work he did, she would say, ‘He’s a traveler’.

Then I got sick and he helped us a lot.  He sent me to the best doctors.  That’s when he gave me these books. He bought me one at a time.

Then I never saw him again.  He disappeared, as if he had returned to the planet he came from.

Then, my mother got sick and I waited for him.  I thought that he would come back to take care of her, to help her get better.

When my mother died, I went to live with my aunt and uncle.  One day, someone knocked on the door, and I saw a man.  I told my aunt there was a stranger at the door.  She let him in, and she fixed him something to eat.  After a while, I realized it was my father.

When I was younger, I looked at him and thought…he was the strongest, greatest, best-looking man. But there he was, tired…with an empty gaze, and not a cent to his name.

I went back home with that stranger who said he was my father.

He got married again with a widow who owned a construction company.  I worked for him a while…then I came to Rome.  He didn’t want me to go, but he wasn’t my father.  At least, it was as if he wasn’t.

For a long time, I thought my father was “the traveler”.


More to come in Piece IV !!!!!

Author: mmartel

"If he's honest, he'll steal; if he's human, he'll murder; if he's faithful, he'll deceive. Being at a loss to resolve these questions, I am resolved to leave them without any resolution." I have so much to say to you that I am afraid I shall tell you nothing."

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