Monday, April 8, 2019

Alone in the North Woods

I am a bit hesitant to post this. I feel like this blog is an effort to be transparent, but I'm afraid people might take this seriously. This short story (consisting of 4 paragraphs, that feels a bit grandiose) is an idle fancy. A fantasy constructed of negativity, not actual desires. Writing it out made me feel a bit better. My hope is reading it will help some other isolated soul feel less alone.

Alone in the North Woods

He takes highway 8 north past Laona, into the forests of northern Wisconsin. His red Corolla is paid off and reliable. He finds a side rode and he follows it around a bend. He sees no mailboxes out here. He will be alone.

He pulls off to the side of the gravel lane and opens the trunk. He retrieves his duffel bag, and his shovel. He walks with a measured gate, attempting dignity. He finds a spot with a few dozen paces between trees. He digs. He digs until he is exhausted.

He opens a bottle of water from his bag, and runs it over his hands. He scrubs them clean, then pulls out a folded towel, wrapped around something heavy. He dries his hands and drinks the remaining water. He puts the towel down next to the hole. He finds two envelopes in the duffel bag. One is a request and payment for whoever eventually comes across this, the other is for the police. He will leave this stranger with a choice. He doesn't want to be an inconvenience, to be demanding, even now. He puts the envelopes under a river-worn rock.

He takes the duffel back to the car and closes the trunk. He returns to his spot and stabs the spade into a mound of dirt on one end. He sits in his hole. He pulls as much of the dirt as he can onto himself. He unfolds the towel and places the gun on his chest. He hangs the towel over his head, using sticks to weigh the edges in place. He doesn't want anyone to have to see what comes next. The smooth barrel of the pistol is slightly cool against his temple.

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