Sea-Soaked Goldenrod

They think I did it. My brain like a fractal array of stars; police coercion can fill any blackness between to make their own constellations. I call it false confession.

Here is what there was: a journal scribbled with the ink-scrabbled eggs of a half-yoked madman living in his seaside shack, where the spray salted over his beard and hands until he couldn’t even write straight. How do you call that evidence? There was also my pen at the scene; it was unmistakably mine—no one else had that type with brass cartridge and silver bullet case. My old-fashioned sentimentality had gotten the better of me.

Here is the scene: you are a policeman, entering that shack. A cottage, it’s called. Open the door; collapsed shelves with Rousseau and Thoreau and Emerson, and on the floorboards the blood and arms and legs and spray-splayed goldenrod hair of my beloved. The hermit gone.

As I said, I’m a sentimental man; Flight of the Valkyries played in my head as the condemnatory sirens warbled outside my door, days later.

View this story's 1 comments.