Every Stick by Bill West

A scarecrow in a stovepipe hat fiddled and danced a jig. Discordant notes sharp as star frost. He thumped the earth with twiggy feet and croaked his garbled song. The wind whipped the dirge away through empty skies. No owls blinked time from the skeletal trees, no gulls mewed the chorus whilst skimming barren waves. His bow was smooth, his fiddle unstrung. He whirled and spun--counted time with his jerking limbs.

A toad, fat as a truck, popped its eyes. Mesmerised. Its tongue flicked, and licked him up.

Every stick.

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