Changeling

A centipede decided it wanted to buried under the sunflower sprout I was planting. I don’t know where it came from: I dug the hole, left to get the sunflower sprout waiting in its container, and arrived back to find a centipede in the hole. It was a large centipede, and the exact color and transparency of coffee before you put the cream in. My efforts to gently flip it out with my trowel were in vain. The soil tumbled back in, and the centipede rode its hundred legs back down to the bottom. The centipede clearly meant to be buried under this sunflower. I tapped the sunflower plant out of its container and observed the white roots snaking along the bottom. At the exact center of the hole, the centipede had curled in a circle like a magic gem, or a tiny guardian waiting for its charge. Finished, watering the plant in, I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen. Or maybe it was already done.

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