She owns an ancient turntable and vinyl and says, "This is my favorite song."
Doesn't everyone say that?
She shares a suede bag with buckskin fringe, "A special gift from momma, back in '83."
Shows me pictures of her and Pop-Pop and baby brother, "ridin' a camel at the county fair."
I don't give a shit as she cocks her head sideways and wonders aloud about me.
Says for me to share what hurts or heals or haunts me.
Says she can never tell when I'm up or down.
Says she can't live like this no more.
Says I never tell her what's real inside of me.
So I do.
"My demons are real, my whiskey realer, my faith scarcely at all, and that kills me."
She sobs and weeps and peeks between her fingers to see if I'm moved.
I am not.
For absolution, resurrection, and strictly selfish purposes, I go to leave.
She grabs my arm and pleads for me to stay.
I bump the ancient turntable,
the vinyl skips.
Call me Deacon Blues, Blues, Blues, Blues . . .