The Silent Houses…

The Silent Houses…

brown concrete wall
Photo by Dids on Pexels.com

I did not even notice a light go out, sometimes whole lives are lived in the smallest of details, you expect things to happen, you know they will happen, but just the same they do not feel right when they do, beyond your control, maybe not even anything residing in your little orbit of daily life, but right there on the perimeter all the time, this is one of those nights, oddly, the temperature is much cooler tonight than it has been, coincidence? I don’t believe in them, a long time neighbor of mine, has passed away, he was not young, it was not sudden, perhaps expected, but neighbors can be a strange relationship at times, someone you see almost every day and almost always at certain times, I remember the ritual so well, rolling the garbage can to the street every sunday night, there are other assigned garbage nights, but sunday is more singular as most of us are not working, and certainly not my neighbor who was retired for years now, but seemingly we had the same routine, on sundays at least, roughly the same time to deploy the garbage to the route, as the years went by I noticed he was hunched over more, perhaps a bit more labored up and down his driveway, there was always the knowing nod, like “howdy neighbor”, how odd to be two houses away and yet know so little, but be totally comfortable with someone, such is the nature of familiarity and ritual, and a neighborhood such as this, I would see his kids visit with their kids, almost every sunday, I would rarely see his wife, on occasion he would get the mail for other neighbors directly across, well, at least before they moved, that is years ago now, the cars of his children are staying later this evening, later than most, at some point they will go home, and then all that will be left, a silent house, haunted by the one remnant left, a widowed spouse.

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