Reverse alchemy


Under the hill we performed reverse alchemy, turning gold into lead, ascension into descent, descent past sun through clouds to trees then grass and under the hill, six feet under, planted only a mile from where we married, two miles from where our children were born.

We performed reverse alchemy, turning gold into lead, fire into ash, water into dust. Like movie stars, I guess, traveling fast, dying young, more like a teenage tragedy song I might have listened to once. This reverse most likely to last, 2cool 2be 4gotten. Here lies Ned Hall, you and me babe, so I buried the Harley with you and think that some day you’ll come get me whether I want you to or not.

What’s it like to be a widow at 22, you are wondering? Some kind of break-up, like you pissed me off messing with some other girl so I dumped you, only then you were just gone, not with that girl, she’s just a phantom hanging with you at the graveyard while time holds tight onto me, arms around my waist, keeping me on top of this hill with you, feeling like a complete fool.

So eventually I got tired of being the widow and left – of course I did – you know I always do – and one day woke up single, not a trace of you left. It’s not in any letter, I had the headstone removed, I bought a Volvo wagon, and I never thought about you ever ever again.

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4 Responses to “Reverse alchemy”


  1. 1 Lollyloo January 9, 2008 at 5:05 pm

    Here lies Ned Hall
    And that’s not all
    Though the kids think it’s gnarly
    He was buried with his Harley

    I love you baby
    Karyn

    Just thought you shoulda posted the whole epitaph … I’ll never forget seeing it with you, in that weedy little graveyard near Capitan.

  2. 2 Teresa January 9, 2008 at 7:27 pm

    Well, this is the fictional version – we don’t know what happened to the real live Karyn.

  3. 3 davidbdale January 9, 2008 at 8:48 pm

    That’s a sweet moment when Karyn wakes up single. It could only happen to a young widow, I guess, with a future. I particularly enjoy the self-delusion of never ever ever. Look at you writing very short novels and leaving 50-odd words in the bank!

  4. 4 Teresa January 10, 2008 at 7:41 pm

    Hey Lollyloo, you forgot the best part – what was it?

    the kids thought it was gnarly,
    he was buried in his harley,
    he said the cops wouldn’t get him
    and they didn’t!

    Makes me want to go on a road trip to Capitan.

    David – Thanks, I liked that adolescent never ever ever bit too. Hey, and I just looked at the word count – wow, 252 – that’s a lot of story in such a tiny space. Cool!


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