Flirt

William Keckler
1 min readFeb 14, 2023

A house was flirting with another house.

It did everything to get its attention: change its curtains religiously, manicure its lawn to perfection, place atop its head like a tiara a turning copper weathervane that featured nearly-mating deer that squeaked its interest every time the wind blew…

But the other house remained stolid and uninterested. It slumbered most of the time and might have been drunk. It started losing shingles and getting unsightly patches on its lawn.

Still, the ardor of the covetous house was only inflamed further by this loutishness. It took house tours at Christmas to see if jealousy would do the trick. It appeared in the local newspapers where weirdly-hatted people praised its fine preservations and perseverations.

Nothing.

Then one day it began shooting arrows into every window of its would-be beloved. It got a junior member of its retinue (a rather bad child) to do this for it. After that, it at least had the house’s attention. It felt the other house watching it all hours of the day and night.

When moonlight bathed the flirtatious house like night cream, it would wink from a small dormer window at the one it desired.

Soon after, the stalked house sold itself and had itself bulldozed and carted away. It wasn’t a subtle ghosting at all. There was a wrecking ball.

An elementary school was built in its place. With time, the amorous house faded into spinsterhood, hating the sounds of children at play, and cracking its floorboards and stairs like aged knuckles for centuries.

--

--

William Keckler

Writer, visual artist. Books include Sanskrit of the Body, which won in the U.S. National Poetry Series (Penguin). https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/532348.