Cherubs. Stone and ceramic-some as small as a kitten and a few as big as a five year old. All over the front yard like a silent army. This is what happens when freedom is expressed with lawn art. Nobody else in the neighborhood put up anything more than a questionable assemblage of flowers in their yard. Not the Wilsons, though. This display was “Expressionism,” as they called it.
I don’t know what the Homeowners Association called it because it had been sued out of existence two years before by these very same Wilsons. They were tasteless and litigious and that meant we were stuck with this Cherubim assault on the most prominent corner in the neighborhood.
Kids would periodically spray paint the little angel penises a day-glow yellow or orange, but that only made them look worse. Mr. Wilson cleaned up them almost as fast as they did it. One night, somebody smashed the largest ones in the street. That brought out Mr. and Mrs. Wilson and their son for clean-up duty. They were indignant and cursing at passing cars as they picked up the jumbled pieces strewn in the street. Somebody would pay, they claimed.
But no one ever did. They put out new cherubs and installed a few cameras out front, along with two heavy-duty floodlights with motion sensors. Initially, these served to scare off vandals and had the added bonus of turning their cherubs into creepy night watchmen. Months later, in our private group chat, we all praised the defiance of the anonymous citizen who took a pellet gun to the floodlights when they were gone on vacation. A blow struck for sanity and against suburban tyranny.
© 2021 Jeff E. Brown. All rights reserved.
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