nailed to the land 2

by underswansea


Hasty Jubilee learned early he couldn’t fly. He fell out a second story window while his mother pinned washing on the line. He flapped a few times on the way down. Ended up in a patch of wild roses. Scratched up, but no worse for wear. Hasty felt lucky when his father sat him on his knee and put store bought band-aids on his scrapes. His older sister watched envious.

HJ always rode with an open beer. In the bush the mountains were cool. He could smell the berries on the slides and cutblocks. Going up the mountain he stopped the truck in the dip and put three beer in the creek on the high side of a culvert The creek was down, the sun was hot, the smoke in the air presented the wild flowers flat. Those beer would be cold as ice on the way down.

Hasty Jubilee ran everywhere. When he went over the hill to town, to the only store, he ran. In the morning, his sister left for school before him. Hasty would run past her just before the yard. After school he ran home or towards the lake, figuring he had time to spare.

HJ stayed on the mountain till dusk, drinking warm beer. On the way down he stopped at the culvert for the cold ones. They were cold as the creek. He looked down the culvert. A cinnamon coloured black bear looked back at him. The bear went downstream, HJ up. HJ had all three beer when he got back in the truck. The first one fizzed, from all the excitement.

Hasty Jubilee never knew time. It never occurred to him, until the sun was down, and it was getting cool, before he would start home. He would be strapped for being late. His sister looked through the crack of the bedroom door. Tomorrow they would run to school.