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Memories of a Dead Crow

Memories of a Dead Crow

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Published by Zachary Cole

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Published by: Zachary Cole on Aug 07, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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The sun is going down. Naturally, I thinkabout death. What else is there to thinkabout? Breathing
, I suppose. There’s a smell
of wood fire floating through the air. Itcarries my mind elsewhere and I think aboutfood. Everything is food. And water.Everything is food and water and death. And
sleep. Sleep in a warm place that’s dry anddoesn’t smell li
ke rotten animal hide orammonia.I can hear the horse up on the ridgebehind me, just stomping away; breathing
through its thick lips. Horses just don’t
care. They
don’t care that my legs arebroken and that I’m lying in a pool of my
own blood for maybe the second time in mythirty-years of life here on this earth. Itry and ease myself into a more comfortableposition and I look up at the ridge.
There’s not much a man can do. I have no
way of getting back up there. I have no wayof walking and I have no way of survivingthis fall. At least I made it this far. Iworked hard and I did everything I couldwhen I wanted to do it. What was the point?All of that was a point unto itself;sweating in the sun, swimming through deepgreen waters, drinking, eating, and wakingup early before the dew breaks upon thinblades of grass. All I can do now is make
peace and think back on the life I’ve lived
and the childhood I experienced.My breath becomes short and the blood
feels sticky and warm on my skin. Now it’s
rder to think. It’s harder to remember my
father’s hard hands as he taught me to till
the soil or bait a hook or fire a pistol.The old place, up in the North Carolinamountains, was right on the other side ofNantahala. Indians used to live there. Oneday, my father and my pappy and me, we allwent up into the creek area to catch newtsfor fishing. Their small, shiny, blue bodieswriggled among the rocks, trying to escapeour grasp. We filled up a bucket and tookthem to the Little Tennessee River and wefished all day.
I’d put the hook through anewt’s neck and then curl it up through its
soft, white belly. We m
ust’ve caught twenty
fish apiece.
My head is swimming and there’s a lightthat’s building up inside of my body. I can
feel it climbing from the rotten flesh of my
broken legs to my hips and it’s as warm as
ever. When it gets to my gut, I start tofeel real good.We would visit my grandparents who livedin the mountains. Often, I'd find myselfenjoying the scenery for lack of moreentertaining prospects. On one occasion,while exploring an expanse of woods beneaththe house, a crow landed right next to me. Ican't remember if it made a sound, but Iremember it's gaping maw as it died. It diedright there. I remember its black bodysliding down the green hill.The light bursts from my eyes. It shootsout of my ears and my head rears back like
I’m about to sneeze and the light flies out
of my mouth like vomit and begins to

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