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Laura, Toucan Editrice

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Flash of the Week, The Walk, Sheri Hillson

First of all, we are aware, we are insanely behind with responding to submissions. We hope to get back to you all this weekend. We love you, we really do. We are horrible irresponsible people who are also incurably busy and incurably romantic. Or something like that.

Anyhoo, Editrice Liz has a date tomorrow night, so she will be posting this week's piece bright and early. Yes, we're aware it's no longer snowing, but it was, in fact, absolutely freezing out today and the hint of romance is too much to pass up. Plus, the hint of romance (or more accurately, sticking to one's convictions) is too much to pass up, plus we owe our frequent contributor Sheri Hillson this piece to be published. So a lot of things, you know. It happens.

The Walk

by Sheri Hillson

'I wonder if squirrels eat pine-nuts. I think they'll eat anything. There's a squirrel with a hunk of bread in its mouth, climbing the tree. My God, the sky is blue, it's cold, though. It must be fourteen below. Ok, maybe not that cold, but it is cold and I love walking in the cold. The air so crisp, the sun so bright, and best of all. . .no people at Welles Park today,' Laurie thought to herself as she wandered on the snow-laced path.

“Hey dork! You want to play with my joystick?” Sammy Zamboni, a shaggy haired metalhead, called to Laurie, who decided to ignore his comment. Sammy was no stranger to Laurie; she remembered him for their days at Queen of Angels school. A day didn't go past the Sammy wasn't in trouble with the nuns. Usually for being drunk at school. Laurie couldn’t even remember if he graduated.

“No, I'm serious,” Sammy said, jogging up to her. “I've had my eye on you since high school.”

Laurie just looked at her feet and walked faster.

“Come on, when the other kids made fun of you I defended you.”

Laurie looked at him He was at her side now.

“Yeah, yeah, when they said you had crabs and lice because you were poor and dirty, I said I’ll bet she’s a great bang,” Sammy smiled, revealing the set of missing front teeth.

“Oh yeah, what a gentleman,” Laurie said with sarcasm peppered in each syllable.

“No, for real. . .how about now,” Sammy said massaging his gums with his tongue.

“Look Sammy, you seem like a great guy,” her voice continued to be seasoned with sarcasm. “But I'm a lesbian. I could get kicked out of the club for sleeping with you. . .you see,” Laurie said trying not to laugh.

“Oh. . .” Sammy's head turned down. “They would really do that?”

Laurie smiled and continued on her walk. Sammy turned around, sort of dejected, and pulled a bottle of Southern Comfort out of his pocket.

Well, some people are out. Crazies. . .Ok, like me. I think he was drunk, oh well. Oh, look at the pigeons, talk about scavengers. I feel sorry for them in the cold. I guess they're OK. She continued down the path, stepping over the Cheetos the pigeons were picking at.

Sleeves of snow covered the branches of leafless trees and swings swung in the breeze as if some spirit was playing with them. The only noise was the trucks and cars running in their fast-paced lives; it was man-made nature. Beasts of the concrete zooming their hearts and spitting out exhaust that colored the snow next to them black. Laurie said she would never own a car for that reason, but actually, she couldn't afford one. So along a snow covered path she walked home, proud of her convictions that had never been challenged.

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