Monday, March 18, 2013


Do you know why vultures eat corpses?

They're scavengers, they're lazy.

Some people think so.

What do you think?

Vultures were once people, lost people who stayed lost. The fog swallowed them.

That's only a story. Lost people are just people.

No, it's the Gods' honest truth! After it rains and the fog descends, all the missing people lose control. They scream and cry out. They are overtaken by a paralysis and their arms grow feathers.

Listen to you. Where did you hear all this?

Mr. Lester told me! He swears it. He told me his sister went missing once, but it was muddy and he could follow her footprints. He saw her fall in the field and roll, her clothes were filthy and he couldn't see her face. She was screaming and the birds everywhe--

You shouldn't take Mr. Lester seriously. His sister left for the City. He's been mad with grief ever since.

No, she didn't leave for the City! If she did, how come no one's heard from her? She doesn't write or visit.

You've never met her. She left before you could walk. How would you know she hasn't written?

Because Mr. Lester isn't the only one who talks about her, and she isn't the only one who's gone to the City and never come back. No one ever comes back from the City. How do we even know there is a City? Have you ever been there?

Of course not, but that doesn't mean there isn't a City. You've never been to the Well with me, but the Well is still there.

Just listen! Mr. Lester said her arms flew back like they were pulled, her face grew long and her screams were terrible. He said it's the worse thing he's ever heard or seen. He said she started to turn black all over and the air grew cold. The wind changed direction and the vultures came from nowhere, sitting in the trees and watching like they knew her!

Vultures don't know people. Vultures are just large, lazy scavengers. They clean up the messes from the other animals. They let everything else do the work and then they leave. Don't let the stories of an old man fool you.

He isn't fooling me. We only see vultures in the village when someone goes missing, or 'goes to the City.' They're only here when it's foggy. Do you ever remember seeing them when the Sun is out?

No, I don't, but I don't concern myself with the movements of vultures. You shouldn't either. Look, you're sweating and working yourself up.

You don't believe me.

You're speaking of ridiculous things, the raving of a lonely man who has no family left. Vultures aren't people. I don't want you seeing Mr. Lester anymore.

But I like Mr. Lester. He needs someone to believe him. He saw these things happen, the Gods' honest truth!

He didn't see anything. I don't want you seeing him, I don't want him filling your head with his crazy stories. You shouldn't be so gullible.

When the fogs roll in, the night is dark,
And the animals quiet, even the lark.
When the light is blocked by all the clouds,
Not even the priests will speak aloud.
That is when the lost are called,
One by one, alone, they fall,
And a lonely brother can see her there,
She goes away, he knows not where.
She joins the others in the sky,
To feast on corpses when the fog rolls by.
We don't believe the legends of the Wood,
But it's the Gods' honest truth that we should.


  1. This may have been the deepest post you've ever written. And that's saying something.

    1. You really think so? Thank you! Though this was very fast -- I looked out my window this morning, saw how swampy my yard had gotten and this idea just came to me. When I started writing the story, it went in a bit of a different direction that I anticipated, but it was still all pretty spur of the moment. Thanks so much, Keith!

  2. This has impressed me and inspired me to let you know that I hope you will do many more...I would read any book published by you of poetry, photos, or stories...either a novel or compiled short stories...a book of any combination of those would be wonderful. You my friend are a true have many amazing gifts

    1. Maybe someday! I'm not sure, but that would definitely be a cool project for the future. Thanks so much!