Thursday, May 04, 2006


By Richard “Ricky” Fescue

A man can take only so much. And Bunky was nothing if not a man. A man whose heart had been broken, whose kindness and wisdom had been met with spite, whose beer and cigarettes and snack crackers had been consumed often and without proper remuneration.

When Bunky had taken all he could take, he threw a Salisbury steak against the wall and hopped on his Kawasaki all-terrain vehicle. “Fuck this shit,” he declared, and roared off into the crisp November night.

The trailer park quickly disappeared behind him as he rode deep into the forest, a late-autumn latticework of trunks and bare limbs illuminated by the moon. The cold air stung his face and his hair danced wildly against his shoulders. Bunky felt alive.

He had traveled this gravel road many times before, but tonight was different. The deer and possums and raccoons that he passed on the roadside seemed to know this, too. Bunky saw them, their eyes glimmering like jewels in the dark, and wished he had remembered to bring his gun. But it was too late for that now.

The road forked up ahead. To the left, it meandered to the river before looping back to the trailer park. To the right, it rose sharply to a pinnacle of fantastic steepness before descending to the intersection with Skoal Highway and the world that lay beyond. After a moment of hesitation, Bunky opened the throttle wide and steered in the only direction his heart would let him.

He crested the hill at full speed and was launched into the air. Higher and higher he went, and soon he found himself far above the road and the trees. Woodland creatures stopped what they were doing and stared in wonder as Bunky and his ATV soared across the night sky. The world seemed to spread out before him as he observed in the distance the twinkling lights of Stumpy’s Corner, Little Pig City and Molassesville. They called to him.

“Get ready, you sons a bitches,” he hollered in reply. "Get ready for Bunky!"

(Today’s story was selected from the most recent anthology of Richard “Ricky” Fescue, who holds the Ernest P. Worrell chair in southern literature at Cyprus City Community College.)


Anonymous said...

Gerald? What's this Gerald crap? I want Bunky back, Anthony.

ES said...

Bunky had to run to the store to get some smokes. He is back.