A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
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December 2006, vol 2 no 4

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Collin Barber

The Long Way Home

Flashing blue lights splatter the windows of a liquor store at the corner of a street where I usually turn. Though I wasn't involved in this scene, I get the feeling that somehow I've done something wrong. It's almost midnight, and despite working a double shift, I decide to take the long way home.

city skyline a shooting star's dead end

I turn the radio down to listen to the wind smashing into my car as I cross an old iron bridge. As these gusts subside, I notice I have become the only traveler on this stretch of road. After driving several miles through fields stripped of cotton and wheat, I see the water tower just above the horizon, and I know that I am almost home.

harvest moon leaves gather around the stump

There's only one light on the street where I live, and my house lies just outside the perimeter of its illumination. With a fistful of keys, I exit my car and tread into the darkness. Suddenly I realize that a day has gone, and I never saw the light of the sun.

moonshine a shadow greets me at the door