in the movie-line with my parents

my mom couldn’t get her MoviePass to work

because the app needed to be “updated”

my dad said “gimme the phone”

and then, with something like disdain

“I can’t see, I didn’t bring my glasses”

I said, “go to the App Store”

the line was really long and the movie was about to start

we’d parked in the top level of the parking garage

because my dad hadn’t wanted to wait for cars that my mom felt certain

were about to pull out

“go to iTunes,” my dad said with authority

“it says ‘start a playlist,’” my mom said annoyed

the line moved up and up and we moved with it

my parents were undone 

why should they pay for a movie

when they had already bought the magic pass?

we reached the ticket window and I bought my ticket

and in the window next to me, my dad bought one for my mom

I left them there and felt freer 

the theater was full

there were no three seats together

I sat in the back and when they arrived, urged them to sit without me

my mom sat next to me

“do you think Dad got a seat?” I asked

“I don’t care,” my mom said

“why don’t you care?”

“because he got mad at me because my MoviePass didn’t work”

“that’s a stupid thing to get mad about” I said

the movie started

my mom and I teared up throughout

it was the Mister Rogers movie

so watching it was like flying close to God

seeing the dangers and powers of humankind

it made me wonder if my novel should help people

it made us all into little worms of nerves

and love and memories

candle-souls shining in our silhouettes

even the bitch whose phone went off after she arrived late and sat in front of us

after the movie, my dad found my mom in the aisle

pulled her close to him as they walked out

and whispered to her 

she later told me it was an apology

that he said he was frustrated at MoviePass and not at her

and I wondered if it had been a different movie

if he’d still be thinking about it

the movie was very convincing 

that love is a greater currency than money

and it’s difficult to watch a big life in two hours

without thinking of your own mortality

and the people who have loved you without pause

the whole epic, shrimpy run of it

it’s exhausting to absorb it

but we did it again after dinner

watching the second part of the Robin Williams doc they’d DVRed

and ate organic fudge bars and a zucchini bread my mom had made

and sometimes my dad said “what did he say?”

and while I repeated it we missed something else

but I didn’t care

I felt connected to them

and had barely smoked weed that day


Rachel B. Glaser is the author of the novel Paulina & Fran, the poetry collections MOODS and HAIRDO, and the story collection Pee On Water. She lives in Northampton, MA with the poet and painter John Maradik.

3 responses to “With my parents”

  1. Elianna says:

    Sitting at a bar in Aruba I read this out loud to my whole family. We laughed out loud. Other families trying to enjoy their trip probably thought we were crazy, who cares?! Now my mom wants to see that movie and is probably going to Google the movie theatre in Aruba and see if it’s playing here. Xoxo

  2. RBG says:

    Hahah! <3 love you!

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