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On the Edge of the Mining Town

By DS Levy

Where the old Polk and Meisenheimer roads merge, winding down to the Sagatuchee River, a serpentining of copper-colored and swiftly-flowing water clotted with sticks and dead leaves, and the carcass of one swollen-bellied beaver, a boy no older than eleven, maybe twelve, steps into the ankle-high water with his bare feet, the water so cold it cuts like a knife, but he doesn’t care about that or the silt oozing between his wrinkled toes, or the tiny bluegill nipping at his ankles, or the pencil-thin snake gliding over the water, darting to the other side and slipping between stalks of dune grass before a golden eagle, atop a fir tree, alights, hangs in midair, and swoops down, grabbing the writhing snake in its talons, then soars back to its regal perch and watches as the sun glints off the dappled surface and the boy, swept into the middle of the no longer copper-colored but dark, opaque green water, disappears.

DS Levy lives in the Midwest; her fiction has appeared in many journals and has been nominated for a Pushcart and Best Microfiction, and was included in Wigleaf's Top 50 2021 and Longlist 2022.

Photo by DS Levy.


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