Present

There was a white hearse driving down my street today. A white hearse with dark windows. No one was following it. I wondered who was inside? Was there anybody being taken to the grave? Probably not. Most likely a gas run. Perhaps a wash. Preparing to take some one back to the earth. Some unfortunate; an elderly person dead of old age, a heart attack in an obese man, a child shot in cross fire. Or, maybe someone decided to end it with the swallowing of pills. Emptying out their medecine cabinet. There’s a million ways to die. But, the heart is a hard thing to stop. It decides when it’s over. In some cases people have pointed a gun directly at the heart only for it to keep beating. That organ decides it all.

It’s midnight and I stay awake thinking of the past and worried of the future. Lots of talk in the bars of the fortunes being made in this town. Houses selling at record prices. Rents going up and up. All through out high school they told us to be prepared for this; this adult life. The throwing away of imaginary things and dreams only to be replaced with the cold hard reality that some day you could be homeless. Or, you will be unable to support yourself. Tossed aside in a country that really does not care. And, you could go crazy, mentally ill. Giving up everything and just living day to day. Hour to hour.

I met a lot of people when I was out on the road. Some living in boxes under bridges. Others sleeping their days away in public parks only to become vampires at night fall. I met rich folks, charitable people who would buy me drinks and meals. Maybe they recognized that I was financialy under par. Maybe I’m not that clever. Could be my insanity had been apparent; no hiding it. I thought I had them fooled, but, no. They knew all along.

And these are the bar saints. Those that look over their flock. Coming to your rescue in times of despair. Buying you solace if only for an hour or two. They are business men who give back. Women that want to talk to somebody. Bartenders who listen. They gave me hope when I needed it the most.

I wonder where that hearse was going today? I wonder. And I sit in my room with my rent paid for the month. Leaving me nothing, but, dollars to spare. I will go to the bar tonight and look for saints. Hopefully they are not all gone. Hopefully.


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