What pegman saw : The carcass of a once living thing



Today, Pegman visits Buffalo, NY.  This location was suggested by Prior.


There are planks over the old school windows now, sightless eyes above the weeds and cracked flagstones. Our neighbours’ houses are boarded too, gutted carcasses of once living things.

At night I walk Moselle Street with the alleycats and hunched and hungry wild dogs. I hear them snap and yelp, I hear the scuff of my worn down shoes – the tap of my cane. I’ll stop outside the Standhope place, or the Connell’s broken picket fence and I let the other sounds come …

Mrs Standhope at her front step, voice taut as a bowstring, calling Teddy in for tea. Wipe your feet and leave that stick outside – you ain’t a puppy … Mr Connell clipping the hedge, whistling You are my Sunshine when Sheila brings him a glass of lemonade, dripping cold …

They’re gone, but a little of them remains, keeping me company as the wild dogs howl.


Written for What pegman saw, a prompt using Google streetview. See the view and write a tale – visit here to join in and to read the other stories.


13 thoughts on “What pegman saw : The carcass of a once living thing

    1. Had a quick search on street view, and wow, it really is bleak. You can see the remnants of the once, thriving community crumbling under neglect and despair. There are towns a little like that here – communities that once relied on mining, car and steel manufacturing – and once the industry is gone, the entire community is destroyed. Great choice of photo. Thanks J

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Nice personification of the school building there…fun exercise…didn’t notice those windows were boarded up without a closer look. Upstate NY can have a stark quality to it, but my memories of it are faint. That’s where the popular, barbecued chicken wings come from (called ‘Buffalo wings’) that supposedly have a distinct sauce. Drove up there one night to Niagara Falls when I was a fraternity pledge, though don’t remember much of it. Bill

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s the thing, isn’t it? Once the few people that knew the place have gone, there will be no one left to even feel sad at the loss of the community. Which is a sadness in itself

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The image of an older person remembering the past — hearing voices from happier times – is poignant by itself, but adding the desolation of what was once a thriving neighborhood makes it even more touching. Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

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