“What’s that tune you keep whistlin’ Tammy? It sounds kind of familiar, but I can’t place it.
“It’s just somethin’ I made up. Maybe it sounds like some other song. I call it “Just swingin’ in the breeze”. You want to hear the words?”
“O.k. It goes like this – “Just swingin’ in the breeze. How happy I will be, just swingin’ in the breeze. Nobody else will see, that I’m swingin’ in the breeze.”
“What made you come up with that song?”
“Haven’t you noticed, Gramps? When we were sittin’ out here yesterday afternoon, the McCarty’s barn door was flappin’ around in the breeze. It’s still flappin’ today. When it flaps open I can see the shadows of something swingin’ around in there. Something must be hangin’ from the rafters.”
“Well, I ‘spose you could be a good neighbor, Tammy, and go shut their barn door. I ain’t seen no sign of any life around there for a couple of days. Bobby Jo must have gone somewhere.”
“I could, but it’s easier to sit here and whistle while you blow smoke rings. Do you think that thing on that low branch right there is a walking stick. Don’t walking sticks usually show up about the first of August?”
Neither of us could figure out if what I saw on the branch was a stick or a walking stick, and neither of us cared to go to the trouble to look closer. After a few minutes, though, I did muster up enough energy to cross the road to the McCarty place to close the barn door.
I slowly made my way back across the gravel road and up the steps to Gramps’ broad porch. I sank into the porch swing and began swinging.
“Why didn’t you close that fool door, Tammy? You just stood there lookin’ in and then turned around and came back.”
“I didn’t think it was the right thing to do.”
“Why was that?”
“I saw what is hangin’ from the rafters that is swingin’ around in the breeze.”
“What is it?”
“Bobby Jo hung herself.”
“You didn’t try to help her?”
“Nope. I’d say she’s been hangin’ there a couple of days.”
“Don’t you think we should call an ambulance?”
“Nope, I think we should call Bud.”
“Shouldn’t we call the sheriff instead of the coroner?”
“Ain’t nothin’ the sheriff can do for Bobby Jo. If the sheriff needs to be called, Bud will do it.”
“I reckon you’re right. Too bad that poor girl hung herself. I guess that preacher man won’t be chasin’ down the road after her anymore.”
“I’ve got a bullet in my rifle that says he won’t be chasin’ down the road after any more girls.”
“Tammy, you’ve got you’re whole life ahead of you. Don’t waste it on puttin’ a bullet in his head.”
“Gramps, I could shoot him on the town square on the Fourth of July and no one would see anything. Besides, if I don’t do it, someone else is bound to.”
“Be that as it may, why give him the easy way out? Let him live with what he’s done. That’ll be far worse for him than a bullet in the head.”
“I’ll think about it.”
Gramps got up, walked into his house and called Bud.