Posted: Feb 10, 2006 3:51 pm
Now, eighteen years they stand there as a warnin'. We get used to folks all high spirited pulling pranks like the one time I came into town and saw someone'd done em up as red indians. But that's all small stuff and easily put right. The mayor would once a week go and personally clean em up and put right any wrong been done to em over the weekend. He even had young Billy the electrician fix em up with light bulbs inside their heads that'd make their heads glow up at night. That'd stop the boys knocking down the Welcome sign at night after they'd been up in the hills sippin shine as they'd be easy to see. But lately, things have not been altogether right with em. First thing goes is a guitar, then a jacket. I know for a fact it aint the young folk. They got no use for jackets or guitars. No, I got to thinkin about it real hard. There's rumours about Jeff Tweedy and I get to thinkin if there aint some truth behind em. people for years been talking about Jeff tweedy: he's been sighted down at Devil's Hollow, someone out huntin spotted him up at Fletcher's Gorge or by the old mine. I seen bigfoot three times but aint never seen no Jeff Tweedy. I was reckonin these stories were just cooked up by jokesters or tales told by mothers to scare their youngins out of playin in the woods and gettin lost. But as I said I got to thinkin. Next to go is an harmonica, then an electric bass then a fiddle then one night I wake up to a hollerin and bangin and there's Jed pale as a sheet "I done saw Jeff Tweedy!" he says. I take him in and put a light on him and take a whiff to see if he aint been drinkin but he's shakin and white and I can't smell no drink. "You been on the shine, Jed?" I ask him. "No sir" he says, "I done saw him plain as I see you". I fix him a drink and tellim to sit down and he's asking me to call the sheriff and saying all this crazy talk about Jeff Tweedy up by the city slickers trying on a jacket. He got me all scared but I took my gun and told him to sit tight while I go take a look "No! Don't!" he's shoutin, "It aint safe to go runnin around at night when Jeff tweedy's about!". I told him to stay there and I take a light and my dogs and go out into the night. I go out and let my dogs go on up ahead. I can't see em but sure can hear em barkin and snarlin at somethin. "What ya go there, boys?" I shout and move up to em with my gun levelled, "You found somethin?". Then I hear a whine then another whine then silence. All I can hear is my heart beatin. "You there?" I shout, but those dogs don't make a sound. I walk up to the city slickers and then I see em. Both dogs, dead with their necks broke. I get to cryin and hollerin and stoop down to em but I know it aint no use. Those dogs are stone cold. Suddenly I hear a movement in the bushes and shine my light on it. There he is, plain as day. Jeff Tweedy. He's crouched, blood dripping from his mouth and he gives out this inhuman roar. A roar like I never heard before except a few times heard in the distance while out huntin, a roar that chilled my to the bone. I gather my wits and fire two shots but he's gone. I hear him dart through the bushes then again I hear that roar, that inhuman sound. After that the sightings stopped. The city slickers were left alone and the mayor had em fixed up good and proper. The rumors about Jeff Tweedy still persist, but that's all folk think of them as: rumors. But I know what I saw that night long ago and it still haunts me to this very day.