With a Whimper

The city is quieter than ever.

It is strange to not see any cars queuing at the McDonald’s across the street. A newspaper pirouettes on the asphalt, its folds following complicated patterns of the robust wind. In the backyard my dogs circle well trod paths with wild and staring eyes, breaths coming in bursts from lowered heads. I might shoot them soon.

The furrowed clouds that reel towards the horizon whisper by fast and inchoate, making tatters of the bluest sky I have ever seen. The sunlight filters through the fresh spring trees, a honeyed warmth imbued with a diffuse and dreamlike quality. It looks like a Monet painting.

I wipe at my smile and my hand comes away bloody. I am glad my wife and our children have gone away to visit her parents, despite the circumstances of her departure. It would have been worse otherwise. The recording explaining the quarantine once more booms out, but after a moment it falters and descends into static.

The couch is soft. I might die with a sigh.

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