Richard Daybell – Novels, stories and short humor
Warning – the following is quite lyrical.
O glorious snow surrounding me with immense drifty mounds! What do thy mounds conceal? How many cocker spaniels, small children, miniCoopers have you swallowed, not to be seen again until May. I am quite conscious of those mounds surrounding me, looming, as I go to fetch the mail, keeping close to the shoveled path lest I too be lost in the mounds ‘til May. But the path is icy (for that’s what winter is about – snow and ice, ice and snow) and my feet, which have been more accustomed to soft earth, grassy carpeting, fly out from ‘neath me. I fall to the cruel ice. And here I am in a place from which I never thought I’d be needing to shout: “Help me. I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.” But I’m not going to shout, for it seems my mouth is frozen to the icy path. O glorious ice! Ice that holds me close to its vast but damn cold bosom. I wait, hoping that someone will come along – a girl scout peddling cookies, a hot dog vendor, or the UPS man delivering a package of lip warmers. Or have they too been swallowed by the shifting, whispering mounds of snow? I tell myself it could be worse; I could be in Chicago. It doesn’t help. Now my life flashes before me, especially the part where I’m on a beach in the Caribbean. But what’s this? My face is stuck in the sand. Children frolic nearby, pointing and laughing. “Hey, mon, why’s your face in the sand?” Tanned beauties stroll by at a safe distance whispering about senility and too many pina coladas. A sand crab sidles up and pinches my nose, and I’m suddenly back in frozen Vermont. But help seems to be at hand.
Two Jehovah’s Witnesses approach. They look down at me and ask, “Are you ready to be saved?” “Doesn’t it look like I’m ready to be saved?” I shout, but no words come out. They chip me free from the ice with their Watchtowers. I thank them, accept an armload of their publications, and they ask me if I’m ready for the end of the world. You betcha.