cold mountain (13)

far away from your native land
swim with fish in a stream

Reminds me of a boy I used to know. Grew up down aways from us, but the folks used to come by every so often. Boy wasn’t right, they said. Nice but couldn’t speak proper and he had an eye that floated, see, so he was always looking two ways at once. Had brothers, and every one of them as normal as could be. But you couldn’t trust him with no machinery nor no animals. What good was he on a working farm? His folks loved him, sure, that’s why they sent the boy off when he was near about 15 or so, to that home in the next state over. Said it was a good place, give him something to do with other folk like him. But then last I heard some years ago that boy had gone and run away. Found the clothes he had been wearing in his room, folded neat, and a pile of fish scales on the pillow. What he do, run out of there stark naked? They couldn’t figure the scales, since there weren’t no stream nor lake around and the cook didn’t keep fish for the suppers, ‘cept on some Fridays and that boy ran on a Monday before the shopping got done anyways. Martell, now, he told me the folks brought the clothes and them scales home, though no one could figure why. But Martell said, he said, them scales glittered like gold and silver. Said he never saw any so beautiful from round here.

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