Friday, February 4, 2011

a short story in eight bar napkins

The driveway was hard to find, just an indent in the tree line, covered with honeysuckle and saplings; but the rusty mailbox, covered in vines, was still visible if you knew to look for it. Parking on the shoulder was ill advised but we did it anyway and feeling like explorers we made our way up to the house, tripping occasionally in the invisible wheel ruts of the long, grown over, gravel driveway. The porch was falling off and the door was ajar. The faded metal house numbers hung crooked to the left of the doorway. Surprisingly, no windows were broken on the old house, with it's paint peeling and eaves drooping. We didn't know what we'd find but we had come too far not to look. We entered carefully into a front room that was like a snow globe of dust motes dancing in sun rays. It took a moment for our eyes to adjust but when they did we were astounded by the riches before us. Smothered in a layer of dust and long forgotten were the accouterments of a fine parlor. Someone had left here in a hurry. We covered our faces with handkerchiefs and stepped carefully through the house, all the while imagining music coming from the old and warped piano and conversations echoing off the tin ceiling. We knew we had found a treasure. We found the kitchen with it's rusty pump that protested loudly as we primed it, a few sepia drops our reward. The dining room table had been warped into a sink from some long occurring ceiling link, but the china cabinet was fine indeed with crystal still inside. We knew it was wrong but we opened the sideboard and each took a spoon. We debated the safety of the stairs and decided to let the rest of the house sleep in peace. We found the kitchen garden and were amazed to find squash, healthy and robust. We saw the remnants of a barn but the pricker bushes kept us away. The stone patio was overgrown by Hens and Chicks - little cactus families we choose not to disturb. With excited but heavy hearts we returned to road to the let the house and it's history remain in peace.

all rights reserved 2/4/11

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