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The Fifth of July

Last night after dark, a neighbor we haven’t seen in months came outside to light fireworks in the middle of the street. We call him The Man of Constant Sorrow, which was funny when he was 19. Now not so much. He's in his 30s, still lives "at home." It was a cloudy, humid night, and the smoke stayed low to the ground. He had an extensive collection of aerial fireworks as well as plenty of basic firecrackers—enough to put on a twenty-minute display of flash and bang with no significant pauses. As he hopped away from each lit fuse, his dark form in the smoke looked eerie, like he was dancing. No one from the neighborhood, not even his family, came out to watch.

I have spent the whole day writing more about TMOCS, and what he’s been like over the years, but I just deleted about 1100 words. I think the above gives you all you need. No need to write a ballad.

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