Ricky Harpole 4/1/2014

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Harpole: Voices at dawn analyze Paw Paw’s  pursuits in hearse

It was just at sunup. It had been a long week and I was still half in neverland when the voices began and I knew where I was.

Longtown Bottoms.

I could hear the voices again through the walls.

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Voice number one: “Paw Paw is back.”

Voice number two: “How can you tell?”

(Voice number one the tracker voice and voice two is the analyst voice.)

“Well, for one thing there is a hearse parked in the drive with a fishing boat on top of it and a shovel handle sticking out of the boat.

“There is a pair of muddy boots on the porch, a lock on the back gate of the hearse and a smell of pipe tobacco and gun oil at the kitchen table.”

Voice number three joined in: “Well, what’s with all that? What’s he up to this time?” (She is the psychology voice.)

Numbers one and two consulted one another in low tones and number one said, “He probably had a body that he needed to dispose of.  A hearse would be in order for that.”

“Yea, and the boat and shovel would work out for the swamp as a final resting place and the muddy boots and gun oil fit right in with the rest of our theory. And what is your theory?”

Up spoke the psychology voice with authority, “As the oldest and wisest with a degree in adult evaluation, my theory is that y’all watch too much TV. If you have noticed it is spring and there is a “rise” or a “fall” on the Coldwater River.

“The boat is for getting about and the shovel is for digging worms. As for the pipe tobacco and gun oil, he always smells like that or worse and the mud on his boots came from our driveway between the hearse and the house.

“He would, in all likelihood, have his tackle and beer in the secure  part of the hearse, hence the lock.

“Sisters, he’s going fishin’ and I’m sure if we chatter and poke or prod him awake, he’ll wake up with the Grumpy Old Paw Paw Syndrome and not take us with him.”

I didn’t hear another sound except for the closing of the muffled door and the pitty-pat of little feet down the hallway.

Goin’ with the Flow,
Ricky Harpole
(Editor’s note: Harpole’s newest acquisition is a used yellow hearse.)