i'm walking down a path, looking upward to the horizon. past the tops of the trees -- with the last leaves of the season clinging to their branches -- i can see the backs of main st.'s buildings. a steeple towers over town hall and the dollar theatre. i push my sunglasses up on my nose and squint into the sun. i look to my right and see two squirrels chase each other around the trunk of a tree. i smile.
and then the path begins to turn. up a few yards i notice the beginning of a cemetery. when i reach the first headstone, i crouch to get a closer look. an elaborate sunflower is carved in one corner of the granite, and in the center, in bold, deep letters it reads: SAMANTHA 1990-2011 BELOVED DAUGHTER, SISTER, FRIEND.
"what. the. fuck." i think.