It's So Far Away

It's So Far Away

By Kevin White

I sat on the porch around mid-morning. I watched it rain. I saw a young man walking, a messenger bag slung over him, a student or a traveler.

            “Why are you walking?” I called out.

            He scratched his arm, shifted his weight. “Car broke. Gotta walk to school.”
            “It’s so far away,” I said. I know what school he was talking about, I think. I had been there, a long time ago.

            He started to walk but I spoke again.

“I’ll drive you.”

He stopped and looked around. He shook his head and was going to say something.

“I’ll drive you after my coffee.”

He looked at me and I gazed at him until he came up on my porch and sat with me.

“How long have you been a student?”

            “That’s not coffee,” he said.

            “Sure, it is.”

            “That’s whiskey.”

            It’s mid-morning. It’s pouring. I watched him toy with his messenger bag. The straps were old and faded. He needed a new one.

            “I’ll drive you when I’m done.” I held up my mug.

            He stood up. “Forget it, I’ll walk.”

            “Are you sure?”

            He didn’t answer. The rain battled him, tooth and nail. He peered into the thick fog to find his way forward.

            “It’s so far away,” I called out. “I’ll drive. I think I know what school.”

            He became a shadow, alone, in many steps. I sat with my coffee. I took sips, carefully, as the rain rolled through, but stayed.

            *
Kevin Richard White is the author of the novels The Face Of A Monster and Patch Of Sunlight. His work has been previously published by Akashic Books, Sundog Lit, Grub Street, Hypertext, The Hunger, Crack The Spine, Dime Show Review, Lunch Ticket, Digging Through The Fat and Ghost Parachute among others. He lives in Pennsylvania.

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