Chickenhawk

ten, or fifteen years
ago
i worked for a local
moving company
never held a driver’s license
but i’ve got some size to me
so it goes
loading, and unloading
the box truck
a Hyundai cab-over
with Kevin
who i swear looked just like
Phil Collins did
back in the day
and i told him so
sometimes starting our mornings
by singing Genesis lyrics
off-key

mostly our job was Sears Deliveries
one for one,
front end washer dryer orders
we’d swap out the old ones
and haul them down to the salvage yard
to be scrapped

well, this one Thursday
we got a delivery order for
a fridge to a neighbouring town
so out we went
thirty or so minutes
looking for this address

to pass the time we gabbed
about old news
and he
being older than i
told me the story of Colin Thatcher
son of a now former provincial premier
Colin followed his father into
politics
got married, had children
and for whatever reason
relations between he and her
deteriorated
to the point where Colin was
accused of hiring a hit man
to off his then ex-wife

“fifty thousand
is a lot of money,
especially back in ’83”

we fell to silent imaginings
of such a callous evaluation of
human life

and as fate may have it, or
irony intervened
i shit you not
shortly after pulling up
that muddy track to that
derelict farmhouse
a woman in her thirties
met us at the back of the truck
so sign the invoice
which Kevin examined
with some alarm

i noticed, and asked him what
and he said he’d tell me later
and i pried, and he divulged
a further recollection
he recognized her name

couldn’t believe it
we were delivering a fridge to
Colin Thatcher

i saw him, and sure enough
that old gray witch of a man
watched us haul his fridge
every inch of the way into his
shit box kitchen

as we deliberated on how best
to remove his old clunker
i assumed Ol’ Thatch was out of earshot
when Kevin asked me to open
the freezer door
i replied much too loudly
“heck no, there’s probably
a severed head in there!”

we heaved it around the corner
and there was Thatcher
staring me down

and all i did was grin like a smug
asshole

Old Thatcher played it off
signed his name
on the delivery manifest
and as soon as we got back to
the shop
Kevin printed off two photocopies
one for us both

i framed mine and hung it proudly
on the wall

then lost it somewhere along with
one of my own failed unions

© Emerys Watchel, 2016 All rights reserved.

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