Getting What's Not

Trees tower above, swaying across a grim sky. They have names I don’t know and reach towards clouds that sail by unheeding. The life that resides within their branches chitters and twerps in defiance of the season.

My face feels tight, pinched by a thousand tiny hands. Every puff of breath trails away to nothing. I watch the wisps of life for a time and finally decide you can’t reclaim what’s lost. My eyes feel dry and battered but still manage to wet my stiffened cheeks.

Shifting layers of clothing gap and betray, allowing themselves to be invaded. I am naked, or so it seems. Perhaps it would be better if I were.

Perhaps it would be better if I were not.

A magpie makes a clumsy flight to the leaf strewn ground. His landing is skewed, ruffling his feathers. Cocking his head to one side he considers me, which is fair, as I am considering him. Apparently satisfied, he goes on with his errand on the hard ground amidst the swirling detritus of happier times.

He gets it. He knows I don’t matter.

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