Armstrong Kelley - Otherworld SS 1 - Savage
It was a late summer night. Hot and sticky,
like most summer nights in Baton Rouge.
My family had retreated to an RV campsite
on the city’s edge, as they did every summer weekend.
It was past midnight and I was wandering
the woods alone.
Nothing unusual about that.
I suppose there should be something unusual
about a six-year-old roaming the forest at night,
but my parents had a vague idea of
my whereabouts and didn’t care about the specifics.
So long as I stayed out of trouble
and didn’t bother them, I could do as I liked.
Saturday nights at the campground were always the same.
My parents and their friends would gather at one of the sites, start a bonfire,
and drink and talk until morning. We kids were left to amuse ourselves.
My older brothers were supposed to look after me but, as usual, they were with their friends, enjoying filched beer and cigarettes,
and we're quite happy to let me take off on my own,
so long as I hightailed it back to the
campsite when my parents finally whistled us into bed.