Grass So Green
By Ronald Cypress
After the new grass covered her property, Lena Heyward spent hours staring out the windows of her house and admiring the work that had been done to her yard. Daydreams about her late husband and what he would have said had he been there to see the replenished yard filled most of the hours she used to gaze out through the glass. He had been the one who had inspired her to make the change. The whole yard had been so dull before. The grass was barely green. Most of the blades had a greenish hue, but they were all very dull. There had been numerous spots of dirt in the backyard. All of them were now covered up. It looked like a whole new yard, and Mrs. Heyward couldn’t stop herself from feeling a great sense of pride whenever she looked at her grass.
One of the first things she had done after her husband passed was hire a reputable company to work on her lawn. She and her husband had talked about getting the whole yard fixed in the past, but nothing ever came from those few discussions. The yard had never looked too bad to him, but the shabbiness of their property was something that always stayed in the back of Lena’s mind. The decision to go ahead and get it fixed wasn’t some form of freedom that came because her husband was gone, but rather Lena saw it as a way to keep a slight bond with him. She had come very close to going ahead and getting their property spruced up while he was still alive, but too many things started to happen and he was gone before anything could be done.
The people who worked for the lawn company had promised quick results, and they hadn’t let her down. The upkeep was going to be expensive, but Lena didn’t mind. The yard wasn’t that big, and the money was there. There really wasn’t a price that could be put on the way the green grass made her feel. It wasn’t just the vibrant color, but whole yard was much softer. One night Lena went into the middle of her backyard and lay on the grass. Right away, Lena felt as if she could have stayed there for hours, engaging in daydreams and actual sleep. She closed her eyes and pictured her and her husband talking. He was right beside her, and they talked for hours.
It didn’t take long before some of the neighbors started to compliment Lena on her yard. They all mentioned how green the grass was and how they wished they could get their yard to look so nice. Lena offered to give them the name and number of the company she had hired to work on her yard, but all the neighbors who complimented her were certain that they would never be able to afford it. All they could do at that time was admire Lena’s property as it outshined the rest of theirs.
The yard was a nice distraction and small reward for a couple of months. It made Lena feel better about being alone. She tried to keep busy during the day, but there wasn’t much to do. At one point she considered finding a part-time job. Friends had suggested she could still go travel; they had been suggested that she do so ever since she retired. Lena thought about the places she would like to go, but when the new grass came she became certain that no place would ever be able to make her feel the way she did in her own home.
All the bliss she needed was there.
On Lena’s property, there were only three trees. Two of them were in the backyard and were about ten feet from each other. The third tree stood alone in her front yard. It was s fairly average looking tree, and Lena had considered having it removed while her yard was being renewed. She eventually decided that it could stay. The tree had been there long before she had, and it had a right to remain at its home. It was from one of the branches on this tree that Lena happened to look outside on morning and see a body swinging.
She didn’t get a good look at the body. All she could tell was that it was a man and he had a rope around his neck. Lena rushed to her bedroom, called the police and waited until they arrived. She couldn’t bring herself to look at the body again, and she averted her eyes as the police came into her home to speak with her. They had her sit in the kitchen and stayed with her until the body had been removed and taken away in an ambulance. They asked the clearly shaken Lena if she was all right several times before leaving her alone. Later, they would offer to take her to the hospital if she felt like she needed to go. Lena assured them that all she had to do was lie down for a while.
Information about the man who had committed suicide on Lena’s property got back to her and she found out that he was just some guy, someone who had left behind a wife, a few kids and a job as an electrician. That was all Lena would find out about him. After the incident, Lena had a hard time looking at the tree in her front yard. When she did look out her living room window her eyes would stay on the grass. The yard was still so beautiful.
About a week passed, before Lena awoke to the sound of people moving around outside. She heard doors being slammed closed and voices. Then she saw the red lights. Lena went to the living room to see what was happening. She had just gotten a glimpse of an ambulance when there was a knock on her door. The police were there to tell her that it had happened again. Another body had been found on her yard. This time, a neighbor had spotted the body of a man lying next to the tree in the front yard. Lena would come to find out that he was a young man who had taken enough pills to almost guarantee he would never wake up again. That was all she would find out about him.
Lena began to look at her yard less and less, and all it took was one more body to show up several feet from the tree in the front yard for her to stop almost completely. Lena had been home and awake to hear when that life was taken. All the police would tell her was that it was just some man. That would be all she would find out. He was some man who had left blood on her grass, and the stain was all she could see whenever she looked out at her front yard. Lena took her hose and sprayed the area several times in the following days, but she was convinced that the stain would never completely disappeared.
The hard day came when Lena had to tell the lawn company that she would no longer need their service. She told them that she was ready to see what happened when the grass was left alone to fend for itself. She said that she had faith that it would keep its incredible color despite the fact that the company had told her it wouldn’t last without the proper care. They would just have to see, Lena told them. They would all just have to wait and see.