by on April 15, 2017 :: 0 comments

photo "Up in Smoke" (above) by Tyler Malone aka The Second Shooter

Into a nondescript cardboard box, they packed what remained of her life since she wasn’t one for owning things and due to her great age, although she would argue that there wasn’t much great about living ninety-six years, she didn’t really need much more than her prayer books, her many and ornate crucifixes that she worshiped and even kissed as if they were secret idols, her myriad votive candle holders, useless and come to think of it cheap religious knickknacks that others sent her when she entered into those last years of the ill weather of her diminishing health, the days, the months, seasons she would sit in her wheelchair, that she despised more than sin itself, and through the sliding glass door that her daughter resolutely cleaned each day and then shined with yesterday’s newspaper, she would watch the every movement and behavioral pleasantries of a local, temporary flock of birds—mostly sparrows, robins, grackles, an intermittent jay—the most common of commons, and how she would talk of the worms they would try to loosen from the ground or the long gulps of water they’d take from the ashtray she would fill with cold water for them when she could get around better; because she collected these from a Europe she never cared to return to only to hold the thin stalk of ash of her daily menthol cigarette that no one, not even she, knew why she smoked at the same time of each and every day and then dumped into the fenced off rectangle of the garden in hopes that from it, in it, something useful and beautiful might grow.

editors note:

Some lives can be summed up in a sentence, and there’s nothing wrong with the beauty of brevity. ~ tyler malone

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