The Astronaut

When I was young, my dad told me he went to the moon on a big rocket ship.
He said it was a long trip so he packed a big roll of hard salami.
Hard salami was always his favorite, but he didn’t like cheese,
so he said he didn’t need any bread, just his big knife.
I asked him about that, why he would go to the moon if he didn’t like cheese?
He said that wasn’t true, the moon being made out of cheese, green or any other color.
It’s made out of rocks and dirt, he said, just like earth, except there’s no air.
How did you breathe?
I had a big helmet, like the kind they dive with when they do salvage work.
I didn’t know what salvage work was.
It’s when they bring up sunken ships full of unimaginable golden treasures.
I asked him if he went to the dark side when he was there.
It was plenty dark enough on the light side for him, he said, what with no streetlights.
He stuck to the light side, which wasn’t true, since it was only lighter, not bright light.
How long were you there?
Actually, I’m still there, he said, it just seems like I’m here.
After we landed on the moon in 1969, I asked him what he thought about that.
He put down his paper, looked at me and said,
It was nice to have company for a while, but alone is good, too.

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