Ronald Gordon Pauley
Observer of the human condition, but mostly lover of animals and all things nature.
Writing at last to explore my creative, searching for my real voice.
Chickens are Dumb, Right?
Chickens are dumb, right? Think again. My chickens not only answer to their names but they have an innate sense of when they can escape their yard to forage in the garden. Indeed, White-tail has a habit of waiting for the right moment to nip into the laundry, up the stairs, and into the kitchen… not waiting for us to bring scraps out.
Flashes of color, blinding in their intensity bring pain to my eyes. Great swirling clouds of smoke move between the buildings, billowing high above the rooftops and spreading through the woods, filling the gaps between the trees. I can no longer see the path as I stumble along in the intense heat and choking fumes, but I must, I must keep going; there is nothing behind me now, nothing to go back to. I have to go on.
The bodies were packed so closely together, they had room only to stand, and that in the stench of their own faeces and urine. The putrid smell filled the air, along with moans and cries of pain and despair. The air was thick in this place. Gigantic beams supported acres of roofing, bearing down upon us menacingly. Thin strands of light entered through gaps in the corrugated iron sheeting, penetrating the gloom like sabers of liquid amber.
Sand whispers by on the pristine beach. Wind and waves weave a pattern at my feet as the tide retreats. A lone seagull stands, watching the waves, and, alternately, me. Clouds gather and move inland, like a flock of seagulls, silent, silent.
Just a Day at the Laundry
Greetings Mum, and thank you for the lovely letter received today – the 5th January: You must surely have lent it wings to arrive so quickly, and as usual, it was a most welcome sight.. although scrunched into an unbelievably small space they call a mailbox. Actually the letter box isn’t too small, but when you get mail for the 5 current residents and ‘several’ previous residents every day, there ain’t much space left I can tell you. It is fortunate that your letters are protected with plastic liners, as the letters are often soaked by rains because the lid won’t close, and sometimes falls off completely.
“Grandpa, Grandpa, Uncle Walter is here.” I shook Grandpa’s hand, but he couldn’t hear me. He lay on the bed, still and white… as he had for several days. “Uncle Walter’s here Grandpa.” I knew everything would be all right now. Uncle Walter had come.