Poetry Prose and Other Words

by Ken Ingham

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Blog 1991

March 1991
Heaven

The concept of heaven as an attractive place where people go when they die is appealing. But too much emphasis on another world after death can detract from efforts to improve and sustain the present one. I like to imagine heaven as a “state of mind,” the one that I achieve by the time I die. Many will scoff but what if it's true? The possibility behooves me to cultivate a higher state of mind. Of course I should do that anyhow. My one sure life will only be improved by preparing my mind for a hypothetical second one.

November, 1991
Short Story

Jim and Judy had an argument while driving down a gravel country road on a summer Sunday afternoon. Jim got angry and drove too fast. He lost control on a curve and tipped over in his1953 Ford. No seat belts. Jim reached over and touched Judy's arm. Are you all right? I think so, she said. Jim apologized for getting angry and maneuvered his body so that he could hold her face in his hands. He kissed her long and hard. Gradually she began to kiss back. I love you he said and she returned the compliment. They kissed again, laying there curled up on the inside roof of the overturned car. It was a lonely road and nobody around. Jim opened one eye and noticed something dripping on the window, the smell of gasoline. “Let's get out of here!” He crawled through the already open window onto the grass along side the road. Then Judy after him. He pulled her through quickly and they ran together down the road. Then “poof”. They looked back to see the car engulfed in flames. They watched together, arm in arm, as black smoke coiled up into the late afternoon sky. A tear worked it way down Jim's cheek and into the corner of his mouth. He took it on his tongue and savored the salty flavor. He had worked hard for that car. But he was glad to be alive and in love.