Untouched

It was months ago, but I saw him.  There is a record of it, he was there.  An iguana on the roadside. On 13th St. he lay unpicked-apart, his tail curled, collecting leaves against it. There were no ants. There were were no flies. The smell of decay was thick about him, and despite gagging, I couldn’t pull away. His scales were peeling from his body like swatches of tissue paper. From nose to tail, three feet. Maybe more.

Why so alone, lizard? Was it a car that hit you, or was it cold or poison? Unopen, you lay quiet, eyes closed. Why no maggots, no fly eggs? It’s as if death left you, half-taken, unfinished. It’s as if time stopped for you, a few moments too late.

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