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Chapter One

He could see the eagles from where he sat and he watched them hover even as the caskets were lowered into the ground. Eagles had been an endangered species he had heard, but not anymore. Now, they were like crows; pedestrian and common. Still, it was difficult not to admire their ability to stay aloft and get a big picture view of all the shit that was going on below. Seeing what they were seeing, they must regret having to land sometimes.

M looked from the good Reverend Pleshett to his aunt and back to the graves. This must finally be the time to throw dirt on the caskets. They were fully lowered. The little motors that unwound the straps holding the caskets had stopped at exactly the same time. That was odd. He would have thought his father's would have kept going down further, to fucking Hell.

The flower he held, a white rose, was going to start to wilt if he had to hold it any longer. His sister wasn't holding hers but had it resting in her lap. Smart for a six year old. The good Reverend was still droning on and M longed to cover the platitudes with his ear buds and some form of caustic rock. Anything would be better.

Still, in a sick kind of way, it was funny that the two funerals were held at the same time. Not just the funerals but the burials and the fact that both were being laid side-by-side in the same cemetery. Just as if they were the same. As if they were equal in whatever God's eyes existed. As if they now had to spend shittin' eternity together. But, that's what you get when you buy a funeral package ahead of time. And that's what you get when you don't have any money to change the program.

No one was happy about the arrangement, but M noticed an overwhelming resignation to the whole affair, as if everyone, from his aunt to the few that attended the funeral, wanted to put the unfortunate events behind them. Get 'em in the ground and be done with it. 'Yes, yes, it was so tragic what happened and those poor kids, what are they gonna do and it's too bad that the parents have to be buried together and well that's the way it goes. Amen.'

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