Lyme Disease
Snowden Wright

What I do to get rid of ticks is to run till they burst. On the occasions I find one harvesting a patch of my leg, I go for a jog, pumping gallons of thick, dark blood from my heart, into some arteries of importance, through muscles, through skin, into the fat, gray belly of the parasite. The ticks grow so engorged with forced feed they explode into tinseled tiny clouds of red mist.
That reminds me of my childhood. At seven, I sat in a chair on the porch, my ankles raised shoulder height in imaginary birthing stirrups, my crotch naked as the day our lord tossed me earthward, while my parents daubed my scrotum with alcohol, plucking the results of hide and seek in the woods. At thirteen, I woke one morning to find on my face, not the scarlet runes from that awful language of puberty, but a living black mark of beauty, its front legs curled into a neat bow, the rest of my cheek pale in the mirror. That reminds me of a dream.
The tick on my leg still atomizes from too much blood, except the blood is not my blood but mercury from a thermometer, plus the tick is not a tick but my wife. Her explosion leaves a silver stain in the shape of heaven.