If I am repaired, can we meet again for the first time, in all of the places I have feared to go, and then, again, in all of the places I will have forgotten, if I am repaired?



Saturday, June 15, 2013

The Whole

When Brent returned from the office, the six two by tens he had ordered were already loaded into the bed of his truck. The boards were neatly strapped, Brent saw, and Gilbert the yard man was tacking a red flag to their ends with a staple gun, the Yard’s old Yale towmotor burbling patiently behind him, forks raised and stinking of diesel.

     ‘This all you need?’ Gilbert asked.

     ‘That’ll do it,’ Brent replied, handing him the yard bill. ‘Thanks Gil.’

     ‘Not a problem,’ Gilbert said, climbing back aboard the towmotor.

     From behind the towmotor's tattered seat Gilbert fished out clipboard  onto which he secured Brent's bill.

         'Ya'll stayin' busy?' Brent asked.   

        'Not bad...' Gilbert replied, returning the clipboard. He pushed a lever that lowered the forks with a hiss. Gilbert turned off the Yale's motor then and reclined in the seat as if both he and the day were exhausted. '...considering.'

     They had been suffering a heat spell now for nearly two weeks; triple digit temps,unbearable humidity. Nobody wanted to work. Gilbert stared out over the neighboring pasture and barn lot, to the rising sun, which was just cresting a faraway line of richly green trees. He removed his cap and slowly ran his free hand over his thinning scalp, glistening with persperation.

     ‘Gonna be hot again today,’ Gilbert warned, adjusting his cap back.

     Brent leaned against the cool metal of his truck. He looked to the sunrise, which seemed to him somehow dulled by the moisture already thick in the air. Then turned back to Gilbert, perched luxuriously there on the old towmotor, still transfixed by the dawn.

     If some were the canopy, glorious and green; some the limbs, trunk, taproot and so on; then they were the feeders, Brent thought, he and Gilbert, the tiny hair-like roots, forever mired in clay, struggling daily for the most meager of sustenance, so distant from anything celebrated as to be forgotten.

     Brent had never been content as a feeder, with simply being integral to the whole. He had crawled his way to the surface dozens of times over the years, but was always pruned down or mowed over before he could become established. He wondered if Gilbert had ever seen the sun, so to speak, ever had the desire to bloom in spring. Gilbert always seemed so content with his place in the system, grateful even.

     Maybe this yard job was Gilbert’s spring, Brent thought, his glorious canopy.

     ‘It sure is,’ Brent agreed, sweat building on his forehead.

1 comment:

  1. Great story and thought process, Steven.
    There are a lot of us tiny hair-like roots... and the world just keeps on going.


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