The tooth fairy was so sorry to have disappointed Micah, the note said; belief in another being was one of the last sacred things, and the tooth fairy hoped she had not damaged Micah’s in her.
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We buried him out in the oilfields, where the wells thrum up and down in a steady metronomal pulse. We buried him in the clothes he wore. Into the grave we threw the gun, the sheet we wrapped him in, his passport, his collection of lepidoptera, shards of bathroom tile.
“Don’t let Roger, or the sadness of these walls ever take that from you,” she said. She shuffled past me and I watched her stop and tap a bony index finger on the door to 24H.
Even though I was finally piecing my life together, I wanted desperately to get the hell out of Nebraska and away from the ruins I was trying to leave in my own past. Maybe I was trying to give myself something to look forward to as well, something other than interminable sobriety, that terrifying prospect.
There are this many means of exerting your will on the world and only one very quiet, lush way the world wills it back in again. Under the scrub pines, I evolve: I hear every scale of rust flake from the backhoe and fall into the dirt like thunderclaps. A furious wave of cells, splitting and dividing—human, vine, rust, dirt.