Ireland could have put a man on the moon first, you know

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
A lonely little girl learns about how her parents met in Ireland and came to America in the late '50's.

Submitted: July 12, 2010

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Submitted: July 12, 2010

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The stars shone brightly on the little girl. She was standing up on the top of the fourteen-story building, but not at the edge. The lights of the city blinded the majority of her view. Below her, taxis honked. Last-minute ferries whistled at they docked at Staten Island. The windows in the office buildings and skyscrapers in front of her had their lights switched off as businessmen left work and went home to their wives and cookie-cutter children. People of all races, genders, and religions walked the streets below her. Some were getting a new stash of heroin. Some were mere tourists, walking in a neighborhood they shouldn't have been walking in in the first place. Some were mothers, dragging their children home. Perhaps her mother was down their, returning home to their apartment after stopping at the market to buy some milk. Perhaps they were nobody, who had nobody to go home too. The girl smoothed out the front of her shirt. Looking up at the night sky made you feel so alone, like the nobodies who had nobodies who ate alone and lived alone, maybe with a cat that would lost tuffs of it's hair when it got scared. The night sky made you feel as if all you had were the clothes on your back and the things in your pockets. She didn't like that feeling, and she doubted anyone did. Coming to terms with actuality scares people into doing terrible things. Her eyes darted down, and she straight ahead at the two towers being constructed. From any corner you could see them. Johnny Carson had said that, when finished, they would be the tallest building in the world. She saved every magazine article and every newspaper clipping about them. She had never seen anything that tall. She turned her head upward, her coke-bottle glasses at the rim of her nose. Her red, mushroom hair fell back, and her eyes blinked at the moon above her. Only four years earlier two astronauts had landed on the moon for the first time. She had watched it on the television in the living room with her parents and brothers and sisters. Her father had been sitting in his favorite chair, guffawing. "Ireland could've put a man on the moon first, y'know. They just keep fighting with each other 'oer whether the fact you're a damn Catholic or a damn Protestant. Bloody hell," he had said as her mother turned up the volume on the television. "Miles hush darling, the babes are trying t'watch," she had hushed.


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