I really want to get this going....

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Saturday, January 14, 2006

THE GUY WITH THE BLUE COAT

57. THE GUY WITH THE BLUE COAT:

The guy with the blue coat said he was going to send me something but I always knew him to be a liar so I never expected much and he'd once told me he lived 'by the water with the blue spruce on the shoreline' and that sounded too pat for me to believe for I knew him to live adjacent to the canal where all the junk lumber had been dumped and where people dropped off washers and bicycles and other crap they didn't want and if he thought that was any sort of paradaisical existence for anyone he was surely nuts (the old tan-stucco boarding house was still standing but ready to fall in and had been vacant except for him for at least thirty years and it once held the canal workers who hauled the cargo which passed through from Philadelphia to Manhattan or wherever that stuff ended up and it all went in either direction anyway and they were all gone now and if he had any neighbors at all they were sure to be rats or rodents) and just over the hill from him in Liberty or whatever they called it now was the slimy graveyard where they buried all these people - old tottering stones from the 1800's and then the latest ones the newest or the most recent anyway - cut from a different stone entirely and bereft of anything cool to say - all the etchings of the latest ones being nothing but boring dates and names and such while the old ones with their cherubs and willow trees and angels adorning names and dates often too were held in groups with interesting sayings and slogans and epithet's that were fun to read but "you're supposed to be sad in a graveyard not happy" was what he said to me when I mentioned this to him and now there's nothing there anyway except for some stupid farmer who has hours on Saturdays from 10AM to 4PM when he sells 'small dogs and puppies' whatever that exactly means - and I always wanted to get there and see for myself and maybe get a dog or a small dog at least or a puppy if they're not the same thing but his sign was always confusing to me and it never mentioned price so I never went - dogs being quite plentiful it seemed anywhere else you could look and I'd rather they were free anyway (that's a double meaning too FREE for me - as it were - and free for themselves to wander to roam and to run around unfettered) but the guy with the blue coat played the harmonica too and the dulcimer or zither or one of those old instruments that no one understands anymore and I'd see him sometimes a little farther off at the edge of the parkland by the water-bridge playing some soulful sad tune to himself - since no one else was ever around - and I'd figure right then that LIAR OR NOT he really was probably right about the graveyard.
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And then like some unsought-for pterodactyl he would suddenly seem to come to life and be around everywhere I went - like some hillbilly in disguise with a flannel shirt for parents and two mud-boots for twin sisters he'd just be there hanging around listening and misunderstanding and then misrepresenting things and talking out of turn and he'd never read a newspaper - he said - that he could believe and even the 'car ads were mostly wrong' but he'd sit around eating candy and hard rolls whenever he found them to be available and the crusty old people at the general store down the patch by the riverbend started taking to him and letting him in on rainy days and the like and he'd become a fixture at Busby's General that no one ever flinched anymore even if he came in covered in concrete and cement dust and with big patches of dried stucco and paste stuck onto his shirt - as long as he could still talk he would - and then he started smelling as bad as he looked but no one would ever tell him but there WERE people (it was said - after a while) who wanted him dead and who'd talked about shooting him during hunting season or mistaking him for a deer or whatever (but I said 'whoever saw a deer with a fluorescent-orange farmer's cap on?') and then they'd argue over where to put the body or how to dump his remains (and I'd say 'take him back home in your wagon and dump his dead ass in the corner of that shit-shack he's living in and leave him there covered with leaves for a month or two until some bear or animal gets him and then blame that - NO ONE ever convicts Mother Nature!' and they laughed me off and said 'shut up or there'll be two to kill') so I did and - maimed stupid or dead or not - I began seeing much less of him after this sort of talk got around.

1 Comments:

At 7:06 PM, Blogger emerson said...

poor guy..

 

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