What These Roots Have Tasted

by Elizabeth Board

My breath comes in waves broken up by your clenched fist at my throat. It's cold down here, fading in and out in some type of strung out sleep. Black creeps into the edges of my vision and the air is frozen in my throat. The injuries sustained are nothing and I brush them off like dry dark leaves. The struggle comes and goes; an enigmatic rush. I feel the velvety edges of sleep trying to woo their way into my brain, seducing my blood with the promise of no more pain and no more tomorrow. "Give yourself over," they whisper, crooning away just out of reach. You tighten your grasp as my eyes lull back in my head, my body writhing in its own pathetic defense. Sink me to the ground and wait for the cold to set in.

There's blood crusted around my lips, aspirated in my final struggle, and you wipe it off with warm rose colored water. Make me up and wash me off, even more beautiful in a porcelain death. Cold runs across my spine freezing the sweat that has beaded there. Sleek skin will soon rot to the beat of my sullen heart. The maggots will move to and fro in their own daily routines, turning me into just another aspect of them. Nerves are deadened in this final sleep and my body is no longer mine. My eyes are frozen on the last image of you, closing in, coming to kill.

Make my grave at the base of a cherry tree; the fruit will constantly be tainted with a tinge of what these roots have tasted and no one will ever suspect that there's a corpse at the foot of that tree. It's too public, too out there, too hard to hide. I will rot into infinity – blissful wishes trading themselves into silence. Buried animals will make my body one with the soil and years will take their toll. The last evidence of your betrayal will be lost to the earth.