Friday, November 9, 2012

A whiff of death

This looked like a potentially perfect fishing spot -
alpine mountain backdrop, gentle breeze and mild spring weather,
a gurgling river, tumbling happily over a small pebble race.

But something's not quite right.
Muddy eddies of a receding flood have almost,
but not quite,
covered a body ... a dog or sheep perhaps.
Stagnating quietly, putridly, in this picturesque backwater.

Sunlight glistens gold on the rocky bed.
Trout twist and turn,
efficiently avoiding the supposedly tantalising bait.

Determined to make the most of the tranquil setting,
I focus on the graceful old trees lining the river.

Follow, with my eyes, the arching branches
and see high up, tangled with weed and flood debris,
(showing the frightening height and power of last year's flood),
flesh and protruding bones strung up.
Festooning the tree's limbs
like last year's Halloween decorations.

Forgotten, discarded, worthless junk - only lacking the tacky fake plastic colouring.
The foetid flesh has been rubbed clean of fur and drips grotesquely;
distinguishing features long gone.

The excited buzz of blowflies keen to feed on broken flesh
tangled in the fresh spring growth -
evidence that life goes on regardless.

My throat contracts and gag reflex threatens.

In the distance a crow caws lazily.


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