The Divorced Father’s Radio Show

Cassie McDaniel

Cassie McDaniel is a designer, artist, illustrator and writer. She has one foot in the Great White North, where she lives in Toronto, and another foot in the Deep South, her home and favorite backdrop for her writing. Since moving to Canada she founded an eclectic writers group called Soft Spot for the Universe, published with several literary magazines, anthologies, and professional publications, as well as completed a working draft of her first novel. Follow her work on or on Twitter where she regularly posts 140 character stories as @twothickthumbs.
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When you are fiddling with the wires
The microphones, the dials
Prepping songs for your international online radio show
Lining the time with every possible note
Thinking up dedications, pouring your heart
into lyrics over Abilene and songs
that share names with people you love and miss –

Making sure the volume is consistent
Fact-checking on Wikipedia elusive historical details
of every major recording studio in America
Sourcing obscurities on Limewire
Stirring ice into your coffee
Plugging in your headphones
Adjusting your chair
Opening Winamp
Rubbing your hands together –

There I am, in your thoughts. The chat box flashes yellow

You appear in type, without the mustache, without the belly
without the smell of chewing tobacco
but in words, in a-b-c, 1-2-3
you are completely present.

So I shift in my chair look out the window
Massage my wrist, which hurts, from using the mouse
Open iTunes, put in the station’s IP address
Press play, turn up my speakers
I type, “Dad, You’re Live”
You dedicate the entire playlist to me
which makes me cry –

I have eleven letters from my childhood
when we wish it could have been easier
than getting the paper, finding a pen
Finding an envelope, buying the stamp
Trudging to mailboxes
Waiting alone –

If only we had thought of the radio
much, much sooner.

© Cassie McDaniel

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