Dead man walking
Dead man walking
Once alive man, now the drowning man. He sat alone in quiet apartment with the 30-30 on the table. He learned by two funerals, his life was wasted and he lived a shallow life. He cleaned the weapon daily, drinking the southern comfort slowly. He left the house for work only and he wanted no company. He confessed to ghosts nightly. He was damn sorry for not paying attention to his brothers. Yesterday the gun sang to him, “Death be sweet, life can be sweet.The phone rang. He answered the phone. His dear Grandmother told him. We need you okay, are you alright?
He told her. I am okay now and thank you grandma for calling. The phone rang again. Was a Colonel from the recruiting center. He told him. Taking in the prior service. Come down and be re-tested if you still want to come back to the Army. He told the Colonel, thank you and I will come down Monday. Thank you Sir.
Two weeks later. Packed all his belongings he could carry in his truck. He gave away or sold all his furniture. Was a sad goodbye to friends of many years. The eight weeks at Fort Dix, New Jersey was easy. He re-did boot camp without no problems. He volunteered for Iraq. He went to Fort Lee, Virginia for his advance Army training. Was a long drive from Fort Dix, New Jersey to Fort Lee, Virginia. He was glad to leave the East Coast. He arrived at Fort Lee. Easy life compare to basic training. Just some schooling in the day and the nights were free.
He was sitting alone, writing in his journal in the TV room in the Army barracks. A pretty brown hair girl sat with him. She asked him. Why you sitting alone on a Friday night? Don’t drink or play? A saint? He looked at her dark brown eyes and he told her. Just writing the great novel. I ain’t no saint. She smiled and she told him. My name Nicole and what is your name, Hemingway? He smiled dear Agnes, my name is Johnnie.
They talked for hours. She told him, I am a Michigan girl. No work for me at home.She was an amazing young woman. five foot three, strong legs and a beautiful smile that could steal your sadness away. They walked to the pizza and beer parlor. Drank beer till closing time. They walked back and she took his hand and she held it tightly. She told him. I know you are filled with anger and I will make you smile, Johnnie. He told her. She already did.
They got back to the barrack. He sat down and she wrapped her legs around him. She fell asleep with her arms wrapped around him. She was twenty-two years old and fearless. He did a silence prayer. Thank you for Nicole. A needed blessing. He woke her up at 5 am. He told her. You and me. A trip to the sea. She smiled and she agreed.
In the morning at 8am. He was awoken by his friend. His friend told him. A pretty girl is waiting for him down stair. His friend smiled and he told him. I knew you be okay Johnnie. She told me, you two, off to the sea. She was wearing a Summer dress, showing-off her pretty legs. Her brown hair was free-flowing and her smile made him feel weak in the knees. They found his truck and they drove to Virginia Beach. She told him, great stories of her travels and she loved to laugh. she asked him. Dear Hemingway. Why did you re-join? He told her. Bad judgement and poor decision. Lost two brothers to suicide. She took his hand and she sang to him.
“Honey is sweet,
vinegar is bitter,
life is hard and we must be harder,
you and I, are a pair.
A pair of fools,
dancing to the music of life.
Looking for the sea.”
They arrived at the sea. The Winter storm made the sea dance with wonder and Nicole ran to the waves. She tossed off her shoes, lifted her dress and she moved with the waves. Trying to escape them. He laughed at her and he tossed off his shoes, raised his pant legs-up. Joined her in the dance with the sea. She embraced him and she whispered. This is the best day of my life. I love the sea and I do enjoy your company Hemingway.
He kissed her and he told her. Dear Agnes, you are a blessing and a gift. Two people sat by the sea. Hand connected, heart coming alive and the kind sea. Singing her sweet song.