Thursday, July 18, 2013

From the Empirical Archives: Cold Lesson by Travis Laurence Naught

Cold Lesson
Travis Laurence Naught
Originally published in the January 2013 issue of Empirical

Late last night we pulled in to a cold and snowy parking lot

The chains on the tires had to come off as we approached the dry freeway after a long day of off-road
cavorting through 12 inches of fresh powder

It was an ominous feeling with the 22 degree air pressing in against the van heaters blasting on high next
to a road carrying no vehicles, threatening to overtake the warm blowing ventilation before the task of
removal was complete

Stillness was the predominant feeling produced on the night as not even a coyote was howling at the
Moon in such freezing temperatures

Yard lights spread far apart cast a steady though uneven glow to work by

Mental images of maniacal fiends set on manslaughter intermingled with the equally terrifying images of
Dad falling over from a heart attack

Mind racing in absurd and fearful thought such as this whenever a quiet moment caused by a
concentrated warming work pause was taken because the first signs of frostbite numbing effect were
nipping at his exposed extremities

But the job only took 10 minutes and his fingers were spared and my irrational emotions left me feeling
internally ashamed yet again

Because while life can be cruel, I always seem to get by

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