I count half a dozen mile markers on the way to the farm, but I'm sure I missed a few, hidden in the cattails. There's a witch who lives in a shack just up from the emptied graveyard, where the Williams kid used to drink away his undertaker's pay until that second coronary, only she's not really a witch, and I don't even know where I got the idea, but she's out in the back barn singing a song, caught on the wind and carried all the way to the grove, where an elderly man has spent the past fifty years warning his listeners of the imminent apocalypse. There are thin gossamer tethers coming down out of the clouds, the ends of which bind lures which trap the ignorant and the wicked, pulling them upwards, never to be seen again. People constantly disappear in the world, and there is no time to notice, and no one will notice when I leave this world forever. I pretend to count the rocks in the road, or the leaves on the trees, or the dust in the sky, so maybe people will think my inability to pay attention is undercut by hidden skills, though they all know me here, know what I am, the things I do. There is a dead crow at the side of the road, which I would have returned to the living when I was younger, when it still seemed a noble thing to do, but now all I do is try not to look at it as I walk back home.

the exit is hidden within the exit