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There are reasons 
plenty, some unforeseen, 
and others, justified,
why my mother still thinks 
inviting grandpa home
was a catastrophic call—   
her adjectives bleed excess.
 
He hates dryers,
so ran a clothesline
in our front yard, 
tying it from bay window
to closest branch, then wrapped the tree trunk
before letting the line sag against the million-dollar house,
where we conceal our satellite dish.
He chose an ugly orange-colored rope 
that stands out like bright tape
gagging a shaken hostage. 
Now our neighbors know 
he wears only bottle-green underwear, 
and cloth diapers that he washes daily.
 
He shares my mother's passion
for growing vegetables,
but she thinks it’s ludicrous
to be growing cucumbers and red peppers
in front of the house next to her prized
roses, lilies and cannas.
 
He giggles loudly
at the dinner table 
after perfectly timing 
his burp and his fart,
leaving us to assess 
which one is stinkier.
 
He reads dirty magazines
about male strippers and secret
Chinese massages,
and commingles them
in our guest bathroom with mom's books
on breathing, meditation and Hindu deities.
 
Right now he’s in Vegas
with a group of guys in their 70s,
and has my dad's cell phone, 
which we only just discovered
when my mother tried to call my dad,
and instead, some sexy-voiced,
teenaged tramp answered. 


Ajay Vishwanathan, published widely in over fifty literary journals, including elimae, GHOTI, DecomP, Drunken Boat, and Orange Room Review, lives in a realm of words and viruses. He draws inspiration from both, so his days are often stoked.  Mom Doesn't Like Dad's Dad  first appeared in Centrifugal Eye.

 




One of my friends was talking about why her mother was beginning to get irritated at her own father who had started to live with them. I found his antics, habits and methods hilarious, something everyone would enjoy reading about.


 


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