Friday, January 12, 2018

New Words by Wayne H. W Wolfson

Along the Way

Having fallen for various reasons, there was to be seen a parade of animal corpses by the side of the road along the highway. This was in sharp contrast to the beautiful fauna, the incandescent fields of yellow flowers.
There was a lot of land, ramshackle outbuildings, many of which had holes in their walls doing slow hemorrhages of straw, twigs and other bird’s nest minutia.
With the timing of a musician, managing to make the car do a gradual slide into a stop upon the loose gravel that ended right before several cracked flagstones which led up to the bowed steps of the porch.
 She had been perspiring. So in my own head had I been, that I had not realized how moist I too had become.  Turning towards me, her chin touched her chest and her shoulders rose up to her ears.
“I am not here…alone. I mean usually I am by myself but it’s not my place. Hang out for a minute while I see if anyone is home.”
I watched her go up the steps, each of which gave off a sharp creak as soon as it felt her weight upon it. Once it became apparent that she would not be right back, I walked around the side of the house.
A little ways past the house I saw an enclosure and movement. There were four metal gates as would normally slide open to let cattle out of a pen. Instead of being attached to anything else though, each one leaned against the other, all keeping one another propped up in the manner of a house of cards.
In the middle of this makeshift coral which had no discernable entrance was an ostrich. I had read somewhere that they could be big but this one was far larger than I expected even a bigger one to be.
There was a chain around its neck, kept in place by a horseshoe shaped nut and bolt. It glared at me without having consciously made the decision to do so. I began to slowly back away. For some reason this upset it more than me just standing there.
It took a few steps, quickly finding its movements hindered by the chain. The ostrich opened its mouth wide. I do not know if it was anger or pain but it emitted a terrible noise.
Its mouth was now wide open, so wide that, it obscured the view of its head. Looking at it straight on, all that could be viewed was a gynecological, slightly curved pink diamond with deep grooves which sloped downwards towards a black center.
Bethany returned. She had not meant to startle me but as unpleasant as it was I had determined not to take my eyes off of the ostrich until I was in the clear and so had jumped at her touch. Her hair was pulled back and she had on a different shirt.
Despite having cleaned up, I could still smell the drink on her along with the scent of both her sweat and mine.
Right now she had absinthe eyes. Regardless of what actions occurred that she may forget tomorrow she would be rich when upon waking they turned to rubies.
Softly laughing, she told me that the coast was clear.
The house was in a state of disarray and so it was impossible to tell how many people she shared it with or that of her connection to them.
We made our way through the thrift store shambles to a tiny back room that had only one small ripped screened window that was partially blocked by a free standing mirror. The two of us rolled around on the already unmade bed, telling each other lies. Muscle contraction transmissions over, we both drowsed, her falling first.
Briefly, I awoke several hours later and thought that in the stillness of the late hour I had heard the soft slapping of the ostrich’s chain against the makeshift prison wall.
The next morning was not as awkward as it could have been. I brushed my teeth using my index finger while she selected a tee shirt for herself from among the pile on the floor.
There was the start of a headache crawling out from behind my eyes, which I stubbornly insisted to myself was on account of the heat and not the drinks.
Bethany said that she would drive me back. In the car I was quiet but not sullen. I had an attack of bashfulness which prevented me from asking to stop for some coffee. The ride back seemed hell of a lot quicker than the initial ride out for which I was grateful.
She pulled over by the curb. Surprisingly, she too got out of the car. 

“We had fun?”

I nodded.

“I like you, you’re a nice guy.”

“Really, I am not.”

She fell into my arms murmuring the name of a trumpet player and then something in Spanish.
Without first asking permission, she used the pen that my girlfriend had gotten me to list all the places that she would be putting in an appearance on Saturday night.
After she drove away I turned the piece of paper over. It was a receipt for suntan lotion and a box of peppermints.


- Wayne H. W Wolfson 2018

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