Amateur Magic

An old woman sat inside her cabin and twisted a faded wooden music box with brittle digits. As the worn gears rotated and echoed a tune, she moved to a bubbling cauldron on the stove, kicking half-full vials of reagents in her path to the side.

“Show me the truth.”

As commanded, the mist above the pot spiraled, smoke parted and showed her a nearby scene, just down the highway.

A man in a black suit was attaching monitoring equipment to tower near her home. Elvis emerged driving an ATV in slow circles at the bottom of her driveway. There was a twin of her son taken from her at birth, raised in a town in southern Mexico.

Outside a single light bulb spiraled on a cord above the porch. Categorized piles of bone sat outside the door, hiding behind overgrown blades of grass peeking between the gaps of the old wood. On the bottom stair to the driveway sat a patchy brown cat. He was dozing off to the cacophony of “I knew it! I knew it, I knew it…” which in his opinion, sounded nice when accompanied by the dissipating chant of that melodic, yet piercing box.