keys…

He was always wantin’ to drive off somewhere…always wantin’ to go…just leave in a moment’s notice…not tellin’ anyone…not even packin’ a bag…wearin’ clothes he’d had on for days…dandruff speckled his red plaid shirt…sat in that Lazyboy and stared into space…just dreamin’ of takin’ off…

They’d hid the keys from him…the old Ford pickup truck sat out in the driveway as a constant reminder of what he would never be able to do again…he blamed ’em for his downfall…said the kids didn’t keep his mind active enough after momma had died…said it was all down hill from there…

Momma and him would go for long rides…up into Michigan…or…over to Ohio…never stop just drive the whole time…maybe get out once for a bathroom break…grab a Pepsi…bag of corn chips they split ‘tween ’em…but by and large they’d just drive…leavin at sun up and not comin’ home til there were stars in the sky…

This is how their retirement was spent…doin’ what he wanted to do…they were a Christian family…she was subserviant to him…if he wanted to go for a drive then they went for a drive…if he wanted steak when all they could afford was chicken then they found a way to have steak…he was king of his castle…

So…he started gettin’ a little funny in the head…began to forget things…forgot that his wife had passed away at times…thinkin’ she was always in the back room gettin’ ready for them to go on a drive…that back door never opened…just sat closed…he’d sit there callin’ out her name waitin’ for a response…lookin’ all over the small house they’d built for those keys…

And he’d curse up a storm…sayin’ when he found those keys to the truck he’d never come back…was gonna be gone forever…’ventually he’d quit lookin’ for the day…only to wake up the next day and look ’round the place again for ’em…

He wanted those keys…would call his eldest son everyday and ask two things…where was mom…and where were the keys…

Couldn’t take no for an answer…

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