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CIRQUE at Red Robin as a server and lived with the crazy woman on E. 42nd Street. One day my father walked into our apartment unannounced while we were sleeping: when I raised up my head and saw his legs in the room I heard him say, “You should join the Marines.” I picked up the phone and called the recruiter. I was gone a month later. I was 23.

Winter Birches

Then I lived in the U.S. as a Christian for many years. Sadly I was going to go to Alaska at 18 and a girl I had on an impulse asked to marry me six months earlier and forgotten about wanted to come with me. She was a Catholic man’s daughter. From a large Catholic family in Chico, CA. He took her and me and drove to Reno, NV. There my father applied to be a magistrate and on the street corner, in a rush, while my son’s future mother suffered from strep throat married us. We left to Alaska. After having to perform also the divorce for that illconceived venture, my father also officiated my second wedding in Anchorage to a mentally ill woman. After our horrible honeymoon in Europe for 5 weeks we came back and I missed Spring Semester at UAA. I worked

It was in Camp Lejeune as a Marine that I began to understand some of what had happened in my life. I hand wrote on seven legal pads in fountain pen ink the story of our family moving to Israel becoming Christians and moving back. I began writing it 6 months into my 12-month Russian Language Training School at Monterey, CA and finished it in Lejeune. I then wrote two more novels during the two years I was in Lejeune. At this time I was twice divorced, a Marine, and I had a boy being raised in Chico, CA by my first wife who had divorced me to not live in AK. This is the framework from which I began to define my character and possibilities. From here I learned sadly that my father did not have all the answers to any question in the world, a fact I had never before doubted. I was raised you see listening to all of my father’s undergrad and law classes being lectured back to me and my brothers while we drove in cars every single weekend of my youth until the farm put a stop to that practice. I was the oldest Robert Bharda boy and listened to everything my father said and taught as he taught back to ensure that he knew what he was studying. I watched my father and mother both graduate and walk for their undergrad degrees, and I watched my dad graduate from law school and worked in his office downtown from 12 years old. So now you see what I inherited. What I claim as my past and what I claim as my right. You see I have given my father his place and more and more than that gone on to live from the examples he has taught me though he may not understand his true legacy. I am the apex child and content provider for my generation in my small way according to my small gifts. And that is your answer Aaron Kruger.

Cirque, Vol. 7 No. 1  

A Literary Journal for the North Pacific Rim

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