The universe speaks to me. Not in words.

Eyes to the sky above the backlit forest, acid scorches my cheeks. My hands rise to my face, a familiar journey, and I scream with visceral indignation. My fingernails dig into the trenches of my tears. You do not want to know what the universe says. My grip intensifies and blood weaves down my forearms. I cannot feel my body. My head lowers into bloody hands. Sobs rack the empty space where my body should be. The crows will be here soon. They always come after I scream. My throat starts to burn and the sobbing stops. This is not my choice. My heartbeat becomes their wings—uncontrollably fluttering faster and faster. I feel as though I might be sick. Shards of glass well within my throat and pierce my voice box. I cannot breathe. I fall to my knees and grasp my throat with both hands. My body lurches and light erupts from my mouth, cutting a swath through the darkened forest. You do not want to know what the universe says. My jaw cracks as it opens still wider. My vision blurs red. Here they come. Wings and talons rush in from every direction and spiral around me, ripping away my flesh, bit by bit. In the fury I feel resonating celestial bodies, and they whisper their secrets to me.



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