Gone

I can’t tell you how many days after it happened, but suddenly I felt the urge to know exactly what happens to our bodies when we die.

What happened to his body.

I found myself obsessed with the subject, researching the topic for hours online, staying up late reading on the vacuum that is the world wide web everything I could find.

Far from being “dead,” a rotting corpse is teeming with life.

Rotting.

I didn’t even make a note or highlight. I knew the word would be immediately engraved on my mind. And once it was, others came to join it-

Decomposition.

Self-digestion.

Autolysis.

Putrefaction.

Discoloration of the body, I learned, was caused by anaerobic bacteria feeding on the body’s tissues, and as a result, fermenting the sugars in them to produce gaseous by-products, which in turn lead to bloating.

His blue fingernails.

His purple lips.

These gases continue to build up causing blisters on the skin’s surface, followed by loosening of the skin.

The gash on his head.

How did they manage to keep him looking like him if they found his body two days after he had taken his last breath?

I’m sure his entire face and hands were covered in makeup by the time I got to see him.

Cold on a metal table.

Gone.

And in that moment, there were no words to describe what I felt when I saw whatever parts were left of him held together by science.

No amount of research could’ve prepared me for that.

 

 

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