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Iodine sun seeps through the gauze of sulfuric cloud, atmosphere smothered as sunset swims on still pools of flaming auburn. Dead leaves swirl at the surface. Staggering, spilling, fisticuffing with the twisting branches that grasp and clutch, I toss into the prickly, stinging copse of thorns and splinters. There, at last, I find stillness, inhaling the heady scent of decay, visage buried in debris, listening to the writhing of beetles and centipedes beneath.

As a species decants into the Night, there may linger a faded imprint, but Nature utilizes and swiftly forgets her creatures lost- she knows no mourning as a comet smears the evening sky, unseen, and a last breath escapes with a silent wheeze.