I don’t know why I think of that day endlessly. The room empty, soon to be mine. Just me and that correction pen. The sheer curiosity that ended with confusion. I’d shake it and hear a ball inside, a voice like ticking. Is it really a ball? Why is it needed? I wanted to see it and kept messing with it until it burst. White. All over me. Still, no ball. Just in time, my father comes in, furious, full of emotions and none were happy ones. I still feel the exact fear I felt that day, I also felt immense love and confusion that they merged. To this day I relate love to hurt. He picked me up, shouting. Held my wrist and kept turning me and beating me with his hands and somehow that hurt much more than his usual tools. I just wanted to see that ball and I was just covered with white ink. What did I do wrong?
The beatings were usual but this latter wasn’t. I slept or maybe passed out from the pain on the wet inked floor and my father wakes me up. Gently. You see? You see how I’m confused? How love can be gentle but harmful? He gets me to his bathroom holds both my hands with one of his grabs a bar of soap and washes my ink filled hands.
He was silent the entire time. Not a single word uttered from both of us.
I think of it daily.
I fear that memory soaked itself into my skin and no matter what bar soap I used it will never leave.