He’d gone up to the mountains a few times; in search of peace and maybe in search of himself.

Packed his truck with bottles of booze; some whiskey, cans of beer placed in a cooler. He planned on watching the sun go down with a drink in his hand and his green eyes peering out at God’s creation; just wanted to see it all one last time.

It was back in November that he got the news; cancer had spread throughout his body; started in the lungs; years of smoking Camels had done this to him; the old man wasn’t going to stop now. In fact, he smoked more. Drank more too.

The farmer declined the chemo and the radiation. Said he was ready; ready for an afterlife of walking along the side of Jesus and Vishnu. Drink tea in a garden with Buddha. Have peace in his life. Just wanted peace.

So, the wiry old man sat by the fire watching as old gold took to rest for another day. Took a sip of rye and prayed; prayed for forgiveness of his sins; prayed for a family he never had; prayed for a world he no longer recognized.

And, by the time he said Amen sleep had set in. A long sleep filled with dreams; women he’d been with, money that was squandered, jackpots scored on slot machines. He dreamt on throughout the night. He dreamt on forever and ever. Amen.

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