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It could have been any parkway or turnpike, walking the white line at night with no cars passing by.  Each side of the road lined by grass and trees.   I am carrying a lynx in my arms. He is heavy. I can barely hold all of him, but he is content to be still and be carried. I carry him for a long, long time.  But then I come to a place in the road where it seems a large herd of deer tried to cross, and all that is left is blood-smeared asphalt and body parts. The lynx stirs. We smell the meat and blood and death, and it means very different things to us.  I keep walking, trying to find a place to get off the highway and come to an exit ramp meant only for the DOT.  Apparently I parked my car here, right next to that purple Pinto that parked sideways (asshole), but the space where my car should be is empty.  My car is gone.  I feel loss, deep loss.  Then I begin to doubt myself, did I park somewhere else, but no, this is where my car should be. I was carrying the lynx back to my car so I could take him home and take care of him, but without a car to take him home, what could I do?   I put him down.

I walked up the ramp a ways.  There were booths, like the kind you find at a carnival, and I walked towards them.  So many people. Everything was disorganized, some people were looking for their children, as if everyone watches after everyone else’s kids and has a general idea of where they are.  Lines of rope hanging everywhere, crisscrossed with trinkets for sale.  I heard someone ask for a slice of pizza, and I felt relieved that I could finally get something to eat. I stood in line.  A young girl comes and tears the black satin string from my throat. She hangs it up on the line where there was a space, and starts accusing me of taking it from “him,” whomever him might be.  There is a small, porcelain heart dangling from the string, and it is colored by the tiniest brushstrokes.  I told her, “He gave it to me. This was the way to find the music, he said.” She refused to hear my explanation and walked away, ready to sell the trinket to someone else.

Daylight was approaching.  So many people crowding this on ramp. An event was coming, that’s why they were all here.  I met a drill instructor who told me what was coming, that the sky would be filled with skydivers who would perform. I walked away, not interested.