Everyone needs a secret life

It’s not raining but Odin needs an umbrella anyway because the leaves are wet and they drip when the wind gusts. It’s cold too so he is not expecting the crows when he walks back to the bench from the deli with a ham and cheese sandwich, but there Muninn is on the roof of a yellow Volvo. Then he sees Huginn eyeing him from the gutter. The crows just appear, like one of those pictures you stare at until crows appear.
Odin is not very hungry so the crows do well. Muninn hops up the grass strip between sidewalk and street and hides some of his sandwich under leaves. Huginn buries his under leaves in the gutter. Do they find this stuff again? Odin wonders. Do they remember where they hide everything?
Odin watches them eat. They don’t like tomato, and they look at the arugula like, are you trying to poison us or something?
I am the man who has lunch with the crows, thinks Odin. This is the sharp tip of a secret life poking into my regular life.
What say the hanged?
Huginn tells him.
So this is what it comes to.
Why was not part of the equation.
It’s about time.
Huginn goes on for a while. Odin doesn’t even notice him stop, he finally sees him poking around in the gutter a ways up the street.
What say the slain?
It was a good, round life, they say.
My only wish is to feel the soft muzzle of a horse one last time. That velvet and the smell of horse.
Muninn looks at Odin.
Everyone needs a secret life. A great, abandoned room with a bed in the middle that no one knows about. A table to write and a view of water. A rusty lock with a secret key. A shower.
A place to go sometimes when everyone thinks you’re somewhere else.
When in fact you’re someone else.
Odin gives the birds the rest of the sandwich and goes back to the office.
Getting cool, he says to the receptionist.
Cold, she agrees.