Unto The Night

Unto The Night
Amazon.com/ron koppelberger

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Done in Black Leather

Ron Koppelberger
Done in Black Leather
Climates of dusty desert wind, bone dust dry and blown rough by the sand, Salt Nobel climbed down from the black stallion and brushed his faded Stetson with the back of his palm.
The horizon was reaching away to the south, cactus arms and sagebrush travelers danced and swam in the sweltering sun. He was prospecting the day for the promise of tomorrow; a touch of fire to the south and where had he been, he wasn’t certain, unsure in pass and tide he thought he remembered a city, a barn red livery and a ramshackle cat house. His pockets held a handful of dust and a cache of silver dollars.
Salt was hot, burning hot, he was attired in black leather and silver spurs. The sun had crept into his pores, his flesh, through the dark suede, the black leather. Why was he dressed in black and where was the next town? For a moment Salt wondered why he was traveling south and toward what, what destiny?
Salt tipped the small flask to his parched lips, whiskey warm and burning. He craved the relief of a cool sip. Staring ahead the heat wavered in illusions of liquid , an oasis tinctured by miles of sand and Vaseline. Climbing back on the stallion he continued on moving further away from long forgotten memories. Salt looked backward and for an instant he saw a flash on the horizon, a glimmer of light in the shape of a star. Where had he been?
The day wore on and the sky grew fiery red as the twilight settled across the empty miles. Salt brought the horse to a dry gully wash as he tested the air. It was crazy but he sensed the advent of rain.
The rested near the channel cut into the dry desert floor and somewhere near nights edge it began to rain.
The rain pattered in the dirt speckling the dust and his faded black Stetson. Salt tipped his head back and held his tongue out, the rain tasted good, clear cool in essence. The sprinkles became a downpour filling the gully in a matter of moments.
Salt sat there, drenched in the life-giving rain, thinking. He remembered again, a child and a woman dressed in white, a wedding, his wedding and his son. The woman was calling to him in the midst of a garden, daisies and roses. She whispered his name and turned away with the boy in tow.
Salt remembered and dreamed, he dreamed of life and loves lost, he dreamed of yesterday and the fuzzy edge of tomorrow.
Salt remembered the posse and the gun battle, in the end it flittered like an errant butterfly then faded, then he remembered his wounds, he had been shot, mortally wounded. What had he done, he didn’t know, it was fuzzy, lost. In the end he forgot again and in the morning all was new, fresh and telling him to head south to the rising mountains and the wont of a Passing breath.

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