The Tin

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I kneel in the garden underneath the oak tree.  It’s leaves rustle in the gentle breeze.  Colossal, puffy clouds soundlessly traverse the empty blue.  Birds chirp noisily above my head.  I dig into the ground at the base of ...

I kneel in the garden underneath the oak tree.  It’s leaves rustle in the gentle breeze.  Colossal, puffy clouds soundlessly traverse the empty blue.  Birds chirp noisily above my head.  I dig into the ground at the base of the tree.  I have nothing to dig with so I use my fingers to scrape away the earth.  Two large roots bulge out like tentacles blocking my downward progress.  My hole is deep enough.  I reach for the tin next to me.  The metal lid is cool to the touch.  I want to peer inside one last time, though the blood around the edges has crusted, making it difficult to pry open.  The heart lies in a small pool of its own blood.  I watch it contract and then expand, squirting a red mist into the air.  One final beat.  I put the lid back on and lay the tin in the hole.  I mutter a few words.  A prayer of sorts whose meaning I never understood.  Neatly, I fold the dirt over the hole.  I pat the small mound flat with my hands and sigh, letting my chin drop to my chest.  I inhale deeply and hold the breath in my lungs.  The breeze tickles my skin as the leaves gently scrape against one another.  The clouds have passed over head and the birds no longer sing.  I close my eyes and very slowly exhale as my body slumps over the grave.

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