She consumed the Earth. You called it cannibalism; she called it recycling. Either way, you watched her kneel in that meadow, bathed in moonlight, her emerald green chiffon dress billowing over the soft, dewy grass, as she scooped up handfuls of dirt and crammed them greedily into her mouth, slurping up soil and grass and worms and ants like soup. As that brown loam dripped down her red lips, you thought the bottom half of her face was a maw—a weeping, sucking wound. Had her eyes been panicked, you might have though she was just a homeless lunatic but they were softly closed, as if she was lost in peaceful slumber. Her hands tore at the ground furiously, her jaw ground violently, and her larynx spasmed savagely but her delicate black eyelashes were resting, placid as the wings of a sleeping butterfly.

It occurred to you then that everything that flies is in a state of falling. Gravity, really.

Your repulsion and attraction were indistinguishable; the manner that her brown hair, dark as chestnut, wild, riddled with twigs and dirt and insects, sent shivers of disgust and fear down your spine; yet, simultaneously, that hair provoked a passionate heat to rise from your groin. Fall apart or fall together. You wanted to bury your hands in her kinky hair so badly that your fingers twisted with lust, deforming into claws that tore the air in an impotent rage.



You assumed her skin was white, but under all that dirt, she was functionally raceless, camouflaged in charcoal, filthy as a coalminer in the depths of a West Virginia mountain, but how did the black of her skin contrast with her green dress? A prom dress? No, but it still glowed like bioluminescent algae. Then her hands stopped moving. She sighed with satisfaction, and it sounded like the shuffling of dry leaves. She wiped the corner of her mouth with the back of her hands and belched, confirming that she really relished the taste of dirt, savoring it like you savored your favorite meal, self-loathing with a side of Jack and Coke, but, unlike you, she was not embarrassed. Lost (for her) was confusion, bafflement—is it not delight, and yet, delighted and delightful (in your eyes) she looked right where she belonged. You called it home; she called it returning. Either way, you were the intruder and continued to feel that way even after she opened her eyes and looked toward you. Her eyeballs: green as her dress and the grass, the color of limes and vines, orbs filled with chlorophyll. As those twin green lights settled on what you felt was you, her gaze went further as if you were just a stain on a window. She could see right through you. You got angry; you thought she was ignoring you, but there was nothing really there to recognize, was there? You made to step forward and announce your presence, through force if you had to, but you paused again as she gagged and staggered back.



Cupping her hands under her chin, a pose of humble supplication, she vomited up the loam into her palms. The earth, churned in her gut like Amish butter, thick and rich, erupted out of her mouth in a brown paste that she toyed with like clay, molding it into intricate and delicate figures. Carefully, she laid those figures on the grass next to her and as she let them go you saw what they were: you and her gazing at one another blankly. She reached for you but you recoiled. Her strange being made you feel mundane, inept, unnecessary; if you were a window, she was a mirror, reflecting your horrible visage. All you saw was your want, your need to have a special friend, in a special place, to frolic with under the moonlight, and that sight drove you insane. She offered you love and you gave her lust. Sex. No, not sex, a fuck. You didn’t want her to give herself to you, you wanted to take her. You didn’t want to need her, you wanted her to crave you. She ran from your cruelty through the grass that was, for both of them, long stalks of corn, a maze with no end, and when you found her you…you…well, you know.


The man was lost among the tall grass, the shapes above were haunting visions of astronomical size looming in the gray haze of moonlight like ancient ossified idols on an alien planet. He pitied himself, sobbing in the dark, his tears muddy streaks of silver over his adobe body. He stumbled around, drunkenly, shoving grass to the side until he came to a clearing and found his mate, kneeling, scooping up handfuls of dirt and cramming them into her mouth. Jealousy, was his first emotion. The way his mate devoured that dirt, with such relish, shot an arrow back at him reminding him of his want, his emptiness, his void. He wanted to be devoured. He wanted to be in her mouth, to be eaten, because what is food but life? What is food but something that is needed that does not want.

You never would. You never had the courage to do what you really wanted to do, which was, to approach her, to offer yourself as sacrifice, to ask her, kindly, properly, modestly, to eat you and send you back. But if you could, would you would walk up to her, ask to touch her neck, to lick the mud from her skin and taste her and then, in turn, offer you own neck, tilting it back and ask for her to bite it, to take your flesh into her? Would she gaze at you, her eyes bursting with green like a rain forest, the womb of the Earth, primordial and primitive, and, if so, what would she say?



Jonathan T. Wolf was born, raised, and continues to live in New York City. He received his BA and MA from The City College of New York and in 2018 received his PhD in 20th Century African-American Literature and Critical Race Theory from Fordham University. Stay up to date by following Jon on Facebook