Dysentery and the Amazing Woman

daniel adlerI met the most amazing woman, and then I died of dysentery. It was an agonizing death, like all of the Oregon Trail diseases are. I lay in a ball in bed, wrapped in a diaper pointless to change. I was in too much pain to notice. I wanted to die but when she came in I knew that I could go and feel fine.

She had long black hair and wide-set big black eyes and her skin was the color of coffee with a splash of milk and she wore red lipstick and she lay her hand on my sweat-beaded foreheaded and I closed my eyes and the vice-like pain in my stomach was still there but it didn’t make me feel uncomfortable, for that second. My eyes were shaking and half-lidded and she was in her prime with those big eyes, big eyes, and I might have smiled.

Or tried to. She turned and left. I felt better. Then in late afternoon I felt it. Out the window the gloaming was orange-purple and I closed my eyes and it descended – death – and in a rush like a fire sucked out through the chimney it was over.

Daniel Adler

By Daniel Ryan Adler

Daniel Adler writes fiction and nonfiction and is finishing his MFA at University of South Carolina.

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