Stooped over on the sway backed arch of the old railroad trellis, a man more ancient than old stares into the water far below. One liver spotted hand rises to shade dark eyes from the savage sun, falling like too much weight against his shoulders. Falling like a persistence of memories against the faded brown and once red plaid of his flannel shirt. Hair, long ago turned silver, shivers in the brush of wind that calls over the arroyo like a bitter old woman.
It taunts his sun scorched ears, and brings more color to the wild wrinkled skin of his somber face. Boots that have seen more limes than these tracks will ever know, twist and commence the slow shuffle towards the other side. I wonder some days, if the train will come before I can make it all the way across. Sometimes, I wonder if it’s wishful thinking then I know for sure I’m an old fool. It hurts me, this walk twice a day from the cabin to the town. It was far closer when I was in my youth.
There were times I would run the whole length of the journey in less time than it takes me to get out of bed and dress myself anymore, but I don’t think I could give up a minute of today for a whole bushel of yesteryears. My Gladys, she’s waiting for me over there. Her beautiful face all bright as sunshine. There. I can see the town now, it’s time to get off the tracks and head over yonder through the park where other old folks gather on park benches all summer long.
My Gladys, she never got them, reckon I don’t much either. But so long as I got her, and she’s got me we’re gonna be just fine. On the way there, I stop to get her a yellow daisy, it costs me a quarter, but she’s worth every cent. I’m gonna bring her home from the hospital real soon, you know. Plant her a whole field of yellow flowers so she can sit with me on the porch, and we can rock together into the coming winter.
Courtney from Study Moose
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