Tag Archives: loss

The Impossible Statue


Glenda walked around with her watering can and when she saw the white of the stone out of the corner of her eye she did a double take. There it was, a statue on top of a small mound where yesterday she’d removed a dead flower.
She approached the statue and took a good look at it as some water spilled from the can she now tilted towards the ground. It splashed her slippers but she failed to notice. All she could do was look at the statue, a little boy with no clothing who seemed to be praying. Upon closer look, Glenda saw that he held his hands in a manner that wasn’t exactly praying; she couldn’t decide what he was doing.
A bird landed in her birdbath and startled her back to reality. She looked at the bird, a blue jay, and then returned her gaze to the small statue, which for some reason surprised her by still existing.
She walked over and picked it up. The stone was cold in her hands, which would have been normal had it not been sitting in the sun. It was heavier than it looked, much heavier, in fact. She turned it around and saw it’s little behind, then quickly turned it upside-down to look under the pedestal in an attempt to ignore the blushing of her cheeks.
There was writing carved into the pedestal, but it looked a bit like hieroglyphics. Unsure what to do, she carefully placed the statue back onto the little mound of dirt and continued watering her plants. As the water ran out of the end of the can, she paid no attention to the amount each plant received; instead, her stare remained on the statue.
Once the garden was properly watered, and the bird feeders refilled for her friendly neighborhood avians, she went into the kitchen, where she began to wash the small pile of dishes in her sink. The window above the sink looked directly into her garden, and she could see the little boy’s smile. His face looked so familiar. She’d seen it before, perhaps in a dream, but she couldn’t place it. So familiar…
That night, as Glenda began to drift away into sleep, in those moments in half-dream, half-awareness, she dreamed of her son, a mere boy when he died. The accident was something she tried not to think about in her old age, especially since her husband was gone. But she dreamed of a day on a swing set that may or may not have actually happened; Glenda could not be sure. She saw his face and the smile as she pushed him higher, the grin looking so familiar.
She jumped from sleep and quickly threw on her robe. She knew where she’d seen the face before. It had to be him. She ran through the kitchen to the back door, where she threw on the porch light and ran to the garden.
But the statue was gone.


The Irony of Fortunes

Some music to accompany the story:

He opens the fortune cookie, drops the remnants onto the little dish, and reads it out loud.  “Your life will be happy and peaceful.”

“That’s ironic,” I say from across the table.

“Why?” he asks me.

I give him a quizzical look.  How could he fail to see the irony in this situation?  “Why are we here tonight?  Why did you drag me out on the coldest, rainiest night ever to a Chinese Restaurant we haven’t been to since we were dating ten years ago?”

“I sometimes forget we dated, we’ve been best friends for so long.  We used to come here all the time.”

“Yes, I’m aware of that.  But that’s not why we’re here.”

“Oh yeah…that.”

He’s so frustrating.  Clueless.  But then, that’s the kind of person who would do this in times like these.

“So,” he said, “Can I have your orange wedge?”

I push the little plate towards him.  “Knock yourself out.”

He reaches his big, stupid hand over to my plate and takes the wedge.  He starts slurping at it, sounding like a kid who just started wearing braces.

“Don’t you think I’ll look good in fatigues?”

Ugh.  “Yeah I hear they’re quite slimming.”

He looks like I just slapped him.  He puts down the chewed remnants of peel.  The smell reaches me, making me regret giving up the orangey sweetness.

His gaze is drawn outside, looking at the street now devoid of cars.  Every once in a while the wind blows a splattering of drops onto the window.

“It’s nice here, isn’t it?”

“Yeah, it is.  I don’t get why you would leave.”

“There’s so much peace and quiet.”

I feel like I’m talking to a brick wall.  He continues.

“I love this place.  I’m going to miss it.”

“Then why go?”

“You know.”

I really didn’t.  There is no reason, no point.  The worst is that as of now it’s faceless to me.  I don’t know anyone there, so I don’t need to worry or care.  I can avoid it by staying away from the news, papers, websites.  But now he will be there, and now it has a face and I will be confronted with it at all hours.  At work.  In the car.  Washing the dishes.  On a date.  I’m forced to think about it now…and it makes me feel…

“Uncomfortable?” he asks.

“Huh?” It is like he was reading my mind.

“You look uncomfortable.  Need to switch?  My chair is pretty soft.”

“No, no thanks,” I say, laughing a little.

“I ship out pretty early tomorrow.”

“Do they still say that?  Ship out?  Isn’t that the navy?”

He turns a little red, reminding me of the time he walked in on my little sister changing.

“I dunno…”

“Maybe you better find out before you make an ass of yourself.”

He gets up, bumping into the table and making the glasses of water sway enough to spill a bit over the edge.  He drops a twenty on the table.

“Thanks.  This was important.”

“I know,” I whisper.

He turns to go, and I feel like I need to say something meaningful, but can’t think over the emotional noise cluttering my head.


He turns, but I still don’t know what I want to say.

He gives me a sad wave and turns around to leave.  Pulling his coat tighter, he opens the door and is attacked by the wind, rain spraying him as he makes his way out of my life, and possibly out of his.