The Garden by Henry James

The Garden

A strange sickly smell leaked from the three rain barrels. Except they aren’t rain barrels. Standing at the end of the garden, underneath the eaves of the shed, they’d once held chemicals.

+++ Here, three other properties intercourse with his, hidden by unruly hedges of Hawthorn, black cherry, and dog rose. A family lives behind the hedges. To the left students. And an unmarried couple diagonally. All look forward to late May’s promise of sun.

+++ Three girls, twisted and encased in sand, will be discovered today. For the first time in ages, their bodies will see the sun, and their families will cry anew a final stabbing pain.

+++ Old now, and infirm, he will welcome the attention. One last thrill.

+++ He is finally buried, in the same graveyard as the three, next to his wife, whom he loved, some say, and beat, some say, to death.

+++ The four, shortchanged lives, guard him now, impaled in his grave, his spirit dissolving in the sandy soil. Soon, very soon, he’ll be smoke.


Henry James is an American writer, born in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. He now travels the world, residing in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. A graduate of George Mason and Northwestern State Universities, he has been writing almost all of his life, including countless short stories and poems. He is currently finishing a second novel, which will be released in spring 2019. His poem, The Angels, was exhibited in 2017 at the Art Gallery Le Logge, in Assisi, Italy. In an earlier career, he worked for two US intelligence agencies, the details of which he can never speak.


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