I remember that it was very breezy that day in the park. Her skirt kept blowing up, flapping around her waist like the mouths of those old women who sit on their front porches and whisper falsities about me.
They said I killed her that day. That I gave her the old garrote, maiming that willowy ivory-skinned neck of hers. They said I did it, that afterward I wrapped her in a sack and dropped her off the bridge into the pond below.
They said all of these things, these flappy-mawed old bats did. They said it to each other. They said it to the postman. They said it to the detective, the one in the Florsheim loafers whom I kept catching sniffing around the building. I wanted to tell him how stupid those little shoe tassles are, but my better judgment held down my tongue real tight.
But I didn’t kill the bitch. I had an airtight alibi – that gypsy caravan watched me from their bonfire as I picked dandelions by the edge of the forest. They watched me and then tried to pick pocket me. Even after they came up empty, they still shared a bowl of lima beans with me. Good people, those gypsies. They told that detective this too, as they robbed his stupid tassled loafers right off his feet.
I didn’t kill the bitch. I had an airtight alibi, like I said. I didn’t kill the bitch; I paid the wino on 54th Street to do it for me.