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The Weight of Unspoken Words This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

By LaraMei, Commack, NY

I spent every day of the week after my father’s death in his closet. I would press the white cotton of his shirts against my face and inhale the smell of his fading cologne. I wanted to hold onto him with everything I had. I didn’t know how to let go, how to say goodbye.

He hadn’t finished teaching me how to drive. He never taught me how to parallel park, to merge on a highway, or make a k turn. “Next week,” he had promised because the sun was setting and he didn’t want me driving in the dark. I should have argued. I should have forced him to stay a little longer.

The day it happened, he had a banana nut muffin for breakfast and coffee. He sat at his computer while he ate, and I watched him from behind the counter. He was always working—six days each week, except holidays.

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