The Crows

The old man drank coffee and looked out the window of his mobile home. Crows lined the telephone wires. A rusted air-conditioner sat on a porch next to a tricycle. An American flag was waving in the distance over at the used car lot. Coffee was dripping into a pot near the stove. He took out some milk and sat it next to his cup, which read, Best Grandpa In The World. The tall, lanky old man poured some into the mug. He lit a cigarette and stirred the coffee. When he looked out the window again, the crows were gone. Nothing stays, he said. Everything leaves, took a seat at the kitchen table.

She’s gone, he whispered. Boy’s gone. Don’t know where my grandson is, he said to himself. Maybe Omaha or Tulsa. Nothing is the same. Nothing, he took another drag off his Marlboro.

The television was left on overnight. Some infomercial about improving your sex life was on. He turned the channel immediately. Turned on the local news and kept the sound down. Swatted a fly with the evening paper. There were several flies. All of them swarmed around the trash can, filled with outdated food and beer cans.

It’s the loneliness, he thought. Being by yourself all day and all night, the news showed a clip of trucks coming off an assembly line. That’s what I need, he said out loud. That’s what I need, he crushed out his cigarette. He went back to the window and looked out at the huge American flag waving in the wind. The crows were back on the wire. He noticed how they had the freedom to come and go. He smiled. Looked in his wallet. There was no driver’s license. Just a state identification and a social security card. He had a ten, a five, and a lucky two dollar bill. He sat back down.

Where’d they all go to? he asked. Took another swig of coffee. The old man placed his head on the table. He felt the coolness of the metal. Closed his eyes. When he awoke, he looked out the window again. The crows were gone.

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