It is morning. And, you are not here, she whispered. Strange. Your presence is no longer felt, she sat up in bed. Long time. It’s been a long time since I felt free, the old woman said. Why didn’t you leave earlier? she looked at a picture of him on her night stand, then turned it face down. She wiped her emerald eyes with her wrinkled hand. Looked at the clock. She had slept throughout the night. No dreams.

Walking down the hall, she carried his picture with her. She placed the photo on the kitchen counter. Made coffee and watched as hummingbirds flew to the feeder by the window. They were free. Free to do as they wish, she thought. I wonder where they’ll go next, she mumbled. Do hummingbirds fly south for the winter? she asked herself. Maybe I should.

She finished her coffee and slapped her brittle thigh. I’m going to do it, she said aloud. I’m following the birds, she laughed, got her car keys and started the old Dodge. It runs, she rejoiced. It runs, the old woman couldn’t believe it.

And, in her robe and slippers she flew with the birds. Followed them down highways and back roads. Laughing the whole time. I’m free, she said. I’m free.

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