The Pathologist's Report

The Pathologist’s Report “This is the body of a tall, fit, well-built young man.” Lying here on the slab, stitched from the navel to the chaps, they’ve done your hair all wrong. I’ll pull it back down your forehead, cover the two deep gouges parallel as tracks cutting into your gorgeous face. Wouldn’t want you to look uncool. Your nose, I see is patched together with skin-coloured filler. No in or out breath at all. Can’t put that together. O the pity of it. Apart from the abrasions on your beautiful hands and the wreckage of your face, you are dead perfect. Not a broken bone apart from the one around your neck, your twenty-first present, I see it’s split in two. Your cock lolls to one side as I pull back the sheet to check that it is really you, not some changeling they’ve swapped. You are starting to smell of embalming fluid, drowned in it so I’m still not sure. You were always so shower-fresh. I’m stealing now from the dead, taking your wedding ring away, freshly cut, to give to our son when his tiny hands turn to man’s hands. Right now they wave in the air, clutching at nothing. This numb thing is not you surely? Both of us are sucking our fists at night, it stops my screaming. Don’t fret, your son is sleeping, looked after by our friend while I am down here in the morgue looking at you, for you. You seemed to have slipped by me, whistled off to climb I suppose, what do I tell him when he’s old enough to understand? You do know, he’ll never be old enough. I’m going home now betraying you by leaving. Now you know how it feels. It’s cold here and you won’t speak to me. I want to lay my hand on a warm cheek, lean over him and check his faint breath for life and catch my breath with love when his eyes open and he recognises me and smiles. Lie there then, with your eyes shut against me. Mine stare at the dark all night, dry and open, Hearing you trip and fall, seeing you silently, desperately grasping at crumbling rock after rock. They all let you down. I really am going now. You’ll be sorry you Let me go, you know. Alright then, one kiss and I’ll be off. Sue Heggie]]>

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