childhood fragment #1 – giovanni mangiante

I must have been 6 years old or less
when I saw my nonna walk into the living room,
silent, with a split forehead still oozing
a bit of blood,
and my nonno, immense, unconquerable, unbeatable,
trailing behind her in silence as well.

“nonna what happened?!”
I asked, jumping from the couch.
the TV now a useless noise in the background.

“get out of there!”
I heard my father yell from outside.

I got no explanation. I was too young to be told.
I had only heard about the screams,
about the fights, about the animosity between
my father and my nonno.

I thought nonna had had an accident,
and when some days passed and I asked again,
I was told it had been.

But it was too late.
I knew.

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