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I have a book on my shelf entitled “Forensic Taphonomy” that details for me all kinds of postmortem changes that dead human beings can be subjected to. It shows me what happens when a body is left underwater for a few hours, a day, a few days, a week, a month, a year. It shows different effects of predation. It shows the effects of heat, moisture, dryness. Acid baths, chopping up, smashing to bits, etc.
It shows a photograph of a retarded man who covered his entire head in duct tape and suffocated. He had done it a number of times. It was an obsession with him.
I have a book of wax models of a dead woman with a fetus inside her. You can take out the organs, the womb, the dead wax baby. It is Italian, from the 17th century. La Specola museum, something like that.
I keep a copy of Gray’s Anatomy, too.
I have a book of murder scenes and different wound patterns from gunshots, knives, ice picks, hammers, baseball bats, fire, poisons, acids, machetes and axes, etc. Strangulations of differing types.
I refer to it often.
*
It has been so hot here. Over a hundred the last two days. So last night we slept in the lair, out in the backyard.
Under the three-quarter moon. Among the chirping crickets and occasional sirens and gravel trucks passing by on Main street.
Avec le bulldog.

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Last night I made hummus and a chilled shrimp, kalamata, tomato salad, and a chilled cucumber, feta cheese, greek yogurt salad and these crazy spice-rubbed bacon-wrapped broiled scallops.
A cold, cold bottle of Justin chardonnay.
And for after, home-made lemon sorbet.
I ate myself sick and had to lie down.
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Today the heat wave has broken and we walked along the cliffs over the ocean in rolling fog and cold, tangy salt air. We held hands and talked quietly, as is our way. I rambled on and on about the nature of reality, the impossibility of moral action, the heat death of the universe.
She smiled quietly to herself.
*
Now I gotta make us some lunch.
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The dead continue their dirt naps.
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