Excess

Asking six hundred thousand

Six hundred twenty thousand dollars

For that place.

Honestly, for that place?

The little farmhouse, larded with the excresence addition, no windows.

Fixed shutters, crude, coarse, wrong.

The garage with the convenience store roof.

Crisp white fences, manicured lawn in front.

The barn repainted.

Ten acres, trees girdled, land overgrazed, pond churned to mudhole.

They’ll get it, of course.

Someone with more money than sense will buy it

Indifferent to the abused history, the misused land.

You can’t make a living off the hobby barn. Too small.

You’ll need to be repainting that fence, again.

You’ll be wanting boarders, well, not wanting, but needing.

People who haven’t yet bought their country property, people who need a place for their horses.

People who treat your house as theirs, your things as theirs, you as their paid help.

People outraged by what you charge, honestly, you should pay them for the honor of having dear Scout in your barn. Well, he kicks, but he’s highly bred.

You might want to be making peace with the neighbors, but they’ll know, of course.

They’ll remember how the house used to be, how many people have tried to make it there.

Shoehorning too many horses onto weary land. Hosting boarders who flounce.

It’s not that kind of neighborhood.  We drive tractors, not sports cars. We talk crops.

We shake our heads.

Six hundred thousand. Six hundred twenty thousand.

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