it’s not personal

my father and i talk about what will happen when my mom dies. he lets me know he will go stay with his siblings in southern italy. “it’s not personal,” he tells me. “i know dad. you should have done it years ago.” i tell him that his cousins, nieces and nephews, and police officer friends facebook me from around the world asking me about him. when i tell him this, i can tell he is smiling on the other end of the phone. “of course they are. i was something special back then.” my dad was a federal police officer. he traveled all over the country in his 20’s. he was drop dead gorgeous. 6 feet 2 inches tall. all muscle. he was one of the officers who guarded the pope for one of his assignments. he was something special back then to the village he left and represented with honor. something special to his siblings who stayed on the farm and never left. my dad smoke cigarettes. rode a motorcycle. he was an amateur boxer with some success. he met soccer legends when he was on assignment guarding stadiums that filled 80,000 fans. i am excited for my dad to move back to southern italy. him moving back means my mother has to die first.

i am a first generation italian-american who grew up in southern new jersey. Life is amazingly beautiful and devastating. Sometimes in the same day.

i am a first generation italian-american who grew up in southern new jersey. Life is amazingly beautiful and devastating. Sometimes in the same day.