Jesse Jarnow

dead bird, no. 4

(Being an attempt to write short fiction in even shorter increments…)

dead bird, no. 1, no. 2, no. 3, no. 4, no. 5, no. 6, no. 7, no. 8, no. 9, no. 10, no. 11

“Well, what did they tell you?” she asked. She meant the bird’s parts. There was a time I could have answered the question, when Monica wouldn’t have even needed to articulate it. The idea of telling her of the abstractions I’d read in the mangled pigeon seemed shameful to me, like reverting to the provincial dialect I’d trained my tongue to avoid. She would understand it, though, whatever I said.

“I don’t know,” I muttered. “I really don’t.” I said that second part with more conviction, even though the blood was starting to cake on my fingers and I desperately wanted to wash my hand.

“Oh,” she said, sounding hurt. Feeling hurt, I’m sure. I knew exactly what they meant, and dead birds don’t lie. Then she asked again about what it was like to identify the body.

1 Comment

  1. Rob says: - reply

    I’m enjoying this.

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