The Brother comes home with a bride. He is the baby of us four, forever last, and in our hard feeling home, forever leave him out beat him down trip him up stick your foot out here he comes harassed. Cousins with an extra room put them up.
The Bride is refined, educated, previously married, the sharp delicacy of her features revealing sensitivity and no small amount of sophistication concerning the subject of Family. We like her immediately. The Brother’s eyes glow. He’s pleased to have pleased not only himself but us all. All but Mother.
Who has spent the evening reinventing it, and who at this moment is picking at her food. She slowly raises the fork to her mouth, slips a bit on her tongue.
“Delicious,” she says, her mouth twisted in distaste.
“Brother” was originally published in Happy, issue 6, 1996. It appears here by permission of the author.