The Barbed Wonder ToolThe highway unfurled in long diffuse spider legged array; Sonnated Bluff on the left, boor gossip on the right, Passionate will behind and wanting success to the front, Mecum Dash snuffed in miserable exclamation, “Onward and up Tonto, onward and up!”
The dusty shroud of air lay like an itchy wheezy cloak around the car and in irritating invasive measure. Mecum sneezed into the brown paper napkin and his cupped palm. Recycled paper, the napkin was rough against his nose and the constant sneezing had chaffed his tender flesh. “Damn!” he whispered as the road revealed a clapboard town dressed in ancient dust and shabby goldenrod shoots.
He parked the car in the street next to the tangled remains of a wire mesh fence. The fuss about what I can give you and yours is a pretty penny in perfect dollops of bliss he thought in practice for his sales speech.
Mecum had been a traveling salesman with the Better Barrens Company for the past twenty years. He had seen his share of towns and sold everything from Silly Putty to Bee Pollen, from confetti bombs to firecrackers, From sunglasses to charms declaring the potency of tiger eye. Mecum had sold most everything and The Barbed Wonder Tool. It was used for removing stray threads on sweaters as well as fixing the shine on polyester pants. The tool was just another mode of transit.
The door was chipped green and white paint, it simply read “SUAVE”. Mecum squinted at the lettering “Suave.” he said aloud. “SUUUUUAAAAAAVVVVVVEEEEE!” he rolled across his tongue. The paint cracked and bits of white flake fell to the concrete sidewalk. The door gave a hollow retort as he knocked again. Mecum sighed and tried the knob. The door slid inward in an easy arc as he pushed against the knob. There was a routine moment of expectation as Mecum peered into the shadows of the house. A Christmas ornament lay worn and ancient on the floor in front of him. He tapped it with the tip of his shoe. The ornament rolled a little revealing a clean patch on the dusty floor. Advancing cautiously inward he stepped inside and surveyed the cobwebs and ancient fur tree. The tree4 was in the center of the room, brown, lifeless with needles piled about the base. The air was hazy and tendrils of light shone through the aged cracked blinds. ’Anyone home?” he called out. In delicate steps he tiptoed across the room to the beige recliner that faced the door. Mecum paused for an instant before sitting in the chair. “Perfect,” he muttered “perfect.” The basket next to the recliner was full of wadded up paper. Mecum grabbed and unfolded one of the paper balls. It had one word scrawled across it “SUAVE.” He unfolded another piece, “SUAVE.” again. The solace of the chair was worth a rest and in weary compliance Mecum nodded off.
There were roaming wilds of wheat bloom and glowing saffron vistas that waved and called to him from beyond the granite boulder. “Sweet wheat and saffron Eden he thought. The stones were in an essential bone dust dry dead circle of ancient gray. A cross lay near the center of the circle and written on one of the stones in scarlet was a single word, “SUAVE”. the garden fascinated the real will of his desires, his soul and the substance of his grit. Mecum left the circle of granite and gray as he tempted the saffron to his pleasure.
Mecum woke from his dream and in consumed acquiescent rebirth found the will to leave “SUAVE”. The pulse of a new day he thought as he stepped through the doorway into the sunshine.