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It isn’t a flophouse
where Fred lives now
but he calls it that
a month after moving in
and seeing his fellow
residents with whom
he has something in
common, little money.
But most of them
never had much money
unlike Fred who once had
wads of money, but
by decree of the court
he gives most of it now to
the mother of his children
for alimony and child support
and will do that for years.
Sitting in his hotel room
drinking instant coffee
brewed with hot water
from the bathroom tap,
Fred remembers telling
his parents 20 years ago
he had met the woman he
was going to marry.
That’s nice, they said.
They were happy for him
but his sister was not.
Fred had called her Fatso
most of their childhood.
He even called her Fatso
in front of her friends.
She told Fred she would
call his fiancée and tell her
not to marry him and she did
but the woman married Fred
anyway and they laughed about
the phone call for years.
But 20 years later Fred’s wife
called his sister and said
her brother was worse
than she had ever imagined.
The marriage was over.
She had divorced him,
had custody of the children,
was given the house
and most of their assets,
alimony and child support.
Fred got one of the cars.
Now he sits in his hotel room
and drinks instant coffee
brewed with hot water
from the bathroom tap and
his sister sends him emails
on holidays chock full
of smiling emojis.
She signs every one
Fatso’s Revenge.
More at http://booksonblog12.blogspot.com.

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