No More Nickernackin'Peter Obourn
So that’s all we could do. For over a month, we didn’t hear nothin’. Then one day my phone rang, and before I could even say hello, I hear, “Where the hell you been? I been callin’ you for two days.”
“That you, Bill?” I said.
“Where are you?”
“Listen,” he said, “I need a favor.” He asked me to pick up his mail, watch the house, pay the bills; he’d pay me when he got back.
I said okay, because what else could I say? “Where the hell are you?” I said.
“Hang on a minute.” I could hear him talking to someone, then he said, “Emerson, Iowa.”
“Are you with someone?”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” he said. Then he hung up.
Even though I knew I’d never see the money again, I paid the bills that had to be paid and threw out the junk mail. In among his mail pile were two picture postcards.
I always figured it’s okay to read other people’s postcards. Anyway, this was now a true mystery, so I took them down to Walt’s. Walt, Roy, and Norland were huddled in the booth looking at another picture postcard—this one from Iowa—which had been addressed to Bill, c/o Walt’s Diner, Forgeville, New York, handwritten, but every letter beautiful—curved and slanted exactly the same—like one of those fancy wedding invitations.
So we had three postcards, as follows:
“Oak table” postcard—an oak table sitting in front of an adobe restaurant. According to the card, the table was made from a two-hundred-year-old oak tree. It said: “Dear Billy: This here is the only thing in the USA older than you. Ha-ha,” and it was signed “M.”
“Green bottle” postcard—a green wine bottle from Sterling Winery, Napa Valley, California. You could see the vineyard in the background. It said: “Here’s that bottle of wine I owe you. It was fun. Love, Marjorie.”
Cycles of Rejection: An Elegy for My Four Parents
Alex M. Frankel
City as Mistress
The Mermaid Behind the Glass
John F. Buckley and Martin Ott
Manuals for Trains
Rebecca Morgan Frank
Signs of a Struggle
Kenneth E. Harrison, Jr.
F. Daniel Rzicznek
MPG of Wild Boar
For Nina, Riding Beside in the Buick
Dillon J. Welch
Instructions for Failure
Recovery and Rehabilitation
No More Nickernackin'
Specifics of Hell
Kayla Rae Whitaker