I am holding a small mammal against my chest. When it cries, I try my best to sway like a tree. When it speaks, the words come from a great distance & I can’t make them out. We are hiding in abandoned tunnels under the streets of a city that has engulfed the earth. Our skin has turned pale blue in the absence of sky & our minds are grim reapers: drift nets set to catch rare flashes of joy. A twitch travels from muscle to muscle before lodging permanently in my left eyelid. It’s a lucky thing I’ve still got sunglasses on. The motherless creature in my arms has imprinted on its own reflection & would wail if I ever took them off. With cars above & trains below, the ground never stops trembling, even in its sleep.
I live in an Appalachian hollow in the Juniata watershed of central Pennsylvania, and spend a great deal of time walking in the woods. Here’s a bio. All of my writing here is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. For attribution in printed material, my name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact me for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).