The Obituary

I savour the rich scent of my fair trade coffee, as my knife spreads peanut butter across a toasted piece of twelve-grain bread. I am wearing my housecoat and slippers, Ginevra purring in my lap.
        The digital clock on the oven reads '10:11'.
        My plate is upon the paper. I scan the front, as I take a bite of my toast. High of six degrees Celsius. There's a big colour photograph of Steven Harper shaking hands with Barrack Obama. There are too many headlines for me to focus on.
        It's what that woman said, on the phone, nagging at me. Something's tugging on my mind. I know that feeling well. I try to keep it bottled up. That's why I'm such a recluse. That's why I'm not in a nursing home yet. I'm different.
Before I know what I'm doing, I've pushed back my glass of orange juice, my coffee, my plate of toast and my knife in lucky disarray. Nothing spilled. I don't remember moving them. Left hand flips from page to page. My eyes are closed. I can't smell the coffee anymore. I feel a chill, but I know the room's not cold.
        I'm in control again.
        At some point, Ginevra must have made a leap away. I can sense her fear lingering in the air. Where has she gone? Probably huddling away in some corner of the closet.
        Left hand at my side, right hand on the paper; I open my eyes, and look down. Classifieds - Page CL 13 - DEATHS. My index finger is pointing at a face in a colour photograph. I sense recognition, for it's the proverbial spitting image of my estranged son. My face reddens with shame.
        Moving my finger, I read the details below the photograph.

        Alex David Archer
        Born: October 17th,
        1990, in Toronto
        Died: February 26th,
        2008, in Mississauga.
        Turner & Porter Peel
        Chapel. Public Open
        Casket Viewing Tues.
        March 9th 12:00-3:00
        pm, Funeral on Sun.
        March 14th, 1:00pm.
        Beloved son and
        friend of many.

I was perplexed. I wondered, why did this late young man look so much like my son? I scanned the rest of the obituaries for any names I recognized. At my age, friends are always making their way into this section of the newspaper one by one. None. Clearly, this is what I'd been alerted to by that phone call.
        But, why had its energies called to me? And they still did. I looked up from the newspaper, and made direct eye contact with a photograph on the mantle. My ex-wife, Edna, stared back at me in an unfortunate photograph. The picture was such that her eyes always seemed to be watching me, no matter where I stood.
        And then, came the vision...

The End

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