"Night, Translated" by Jonathan Louis Duckworth

 

He walks out into the gloom. Feels the Florida night,
like a blanket taken from a tumble dryer, hot but still
damp around the edges. Lets it fall over him. It’s
useless to ask the crickets and tree frogs to quiet
down. He’ll still never hear the coming-down of the
starlight as long as he breathes and his cells divide. He
stands beneath an oak where a cat ate a mockingbird
from heartflesh to talon, leaving only feathers as
motile memorial, a pattern of glyphs to be written and
rewritten by the wind. He turns up stones and logs
and finds more cultures embedded in the humus than
in entire human cities. Further below, he discovers
insects toiling, carving their histories into the soil
while people sleep. After the sun rises and the other
humans wake, they’ll spin for him fables about how
the world found its way home.


Jonathan Louis Duckworth is an MFA student at Florida International University and a reader for the Gulf Stream Magazine. His fiction, poetry, and non-fiction appears in or is forthcoming in New Ohio Review, Fourteen Hills, PANK Magazine, Thrice Fiction, Cha, Superstition Review, and elsewhere

Posted on July 28, 2016 .