Water Cup

Marlena Chertock

Dad asks me to fill up the water cup
with Coke, no ice.
I bring it to the soda machine,
stand on tiptoes
and push clear plastic to the water nozzle.

He asks, “Couldn’t do it?”
and gets up to pour the water out,
sits back down
with brown Coke in his water cup.
I feel ashamed.

It feels like everyone in the restaurant is looking
at me and his Coke.
I’ve started stealing.

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