Torn Scrap of Sky
Detective Stevie Gutierrez drops the carton on the table and levers off the lid. On top waits an inventory listing all contents tagged on the river bank and logged into evidence on June 14, 2014.
Subject: Angela Blau, deceased
242 dollars in bills
16 cents in change
Sleep Inn key card
Eyeliner and feathered brush
A small tube of base makeup
Silver button to a blazer, red thread
Rouge, small jar, a fingertip’s smear
One Brash hightop knit shoe (Payless)
Hundai key fob: car key and house key
One lipstick, as humanly beige as possible
A seagull’s bright scream of fish-scented anger
A broken shard of mirror that reflects the ocean
Two foil-wrapped condoms, brand I HATE HIM
One tissue, encrusted with mucus and a blood clot
One pair of underwear, cotton, spangled with stars
A slice of moon, smelling of goat cheese, wrapped in seaweed
Four small packets: sugar (2), dairy creamer, and the smell of rain
A mutilated piece of chewing gum, wrapped into a torn scrap of gray sky
Second shoe not recovered.
By Scott Archer Jones
- Scott currently lives in northern New Mexico, after stints in Louisiana, Texas, the Netherlands, Scotland and Norway. He was on the masthead at the Prague Revue and launched a novel in 2014 with Southern Yellow Pine, Jupiter and Gilgamesh, a Novel of Sumeria and Texas. Scott’s novel The Big Wheel arrived in 2015. Fomite Books published a rising tide of people swept away in March of 2016. All have won FAPA awards, and Jupiter took an IPPY Bronze and was a finalist in two Eric Hoffer Award categories. A fourth novel is in production. You can find more from Scott at his website.