The hum of nocturnal bugs continues into the night. I lay on my back, legs spread, camouflaged in mud too deep for any movement. I feel utter loneliness in the jungle glade; my only company in the pitch black are the ants, whose aquamarine glow floats eerily upon the branches of the canopy, acting as a lighthouse in the low-lying fog. Parasitic vines spiral down thick trunks to the base, draining nutrients from the ancient giants. Bleak ferns spring out of the dark mud all around me, ready to devour. On another day, the musky smell of mushrooms and pungent flowers would have been breathtaking, but today it stands overridden by soil. The humid air hangs still in anticipation. The trees no longer breathe, vines no longer slither and the mud becomes even more ravenous as I sink deeper into the dirt, unable to fight. My teeth grind as the mire slowly oozes down into my esophagus. As I drift into my demise, I feel a last blanket of warmth as I am immersed, ever so slowly drowning. The tiny patter of ant feet on my cheeks marks the last daylight I will ever see. The Jungle’s appetite has been appeased.
by Adam Crespi

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