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Word Count: 1,017
There was a beauty in the death of the cattle A kind of frustrated satisfaction that is wrought from an uphill struggle finally over despite ending the journey at the foot of the mountain Gaunt bodies littered the fractured earth creating a stillness in the air a sense of a battle just over a battle where each side had slaughtered all the warriors of the other The shriveled mounds of stagnant meat were dissolving into the air creating a rankness that completed the mood Rib bones pointed defiantly at the sun making a final stand against the cruelty of nature shouting a silent message into the wind which carried the loud stench of all that is inevitable and frightening The sky before dusk was filled with heat and light an emptiness that promised nothing yet held the fate of many The heat robbed the earth of its life and stole the cool laughter of the creeks The light exploded into raucous laughter at the ill fate of the living and mocked the cows as they expelled a last pathetic grunt into the night The cows closed their saddened eyes with an agony so intense that every soul filled creature felt a strange loss of dignity in their bones And the great old trees wept until the morning The bodies signed the soil with an ink of blood and sealed the fate of the land The very grains of dirt seemed to have declared war upon one another lining up on their distinct sides refusing to mix with the enemy refusing to join as one The blood of the cows thick and sticky only painted the anger of the soil riling the earthen warriors Dying seeds begged the heat and light to subside and invited the rains to clean the bloody warpaint from the dirt armies And the light laughed in their faces An ancient
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