From the mountaintop he screamed.
His voice echoed among the long pines that led to the top.
Echoed, and was swallowed.
In the forest there was stillness.
A bird, long-necked and unlovely, flew past him.

The path from the cabin was a thin ribbon of footprints on the back of the hillside.
He stood on a jut of rock, looking westward, watching the sun.
Behind him, miles behind, the dust of the cabin cooled, settled to the floor.
The table was smashed, the fireplace full of broken glass.
Blood across the bed.

He sat on the edge of the rock and let it take the heat from his body.
Afternoon sun laid across the dark bridge of his nose.
Far away the road was cut into the mountainside.
The cars moved through its wide shadow.
Their rushing came to him faintly.

The pain in his hands, the shaking, sank with the sun.
When it sat atop the farther mountain he lit a cigarette.
Sat smoking in the twilight.
His fingers were copper-black with old blood.
The cut was deep but it was healing.

The cabin door swings open and shut with the wind across the lake.