October 30 2021; Bastrop, Texas; 10:55 am

Eyes, Ears, Nose, Throat: Intact globes, mottled blue corneal surface, large aural pinnae bilaterally, almost the soft G shape of a human ear, hairy, disk-like, creature probably has excellent hearing; brachycephalic nose, nares are slit-like on short muzzle, small stream of blood from left nostril; inside the mouth are pieces of meat, pink tongue, yellowed teeth, larynx visualized, large, open, no epiglottis; as if it both swallows and breathes simultaneously; how could it swallow without choking—as if it swallows some kind of sustenance without substance—sound? Pheromone? Sharp, overdeveloped canine teeth, pointed incisors, no molars.

Heart/Lungs: Covid swab: negative; lungs composed of six lobes, each similar in size; atelectasis of the left lung lobes—found lying on left side; right lung lobes float when placed in water; no pathology noted; heart is also composed of six segments; three large meaty chambers, similar to human ventricle; two thinner pockets—similar to human atrium; one small, firm, marble-smooth chamber—inside are trophies? A human tooth, a rabbit’s foot, one whole vanilla bean, a ring with a purple stone, a smaller, identical anatomical structure—the marble heart chamber of an adolescent?

Skin/Hair: Course, thick, left side steeped in thick mud, malodorous; face, palms of hands, soles of feet, devoid of hair. Bear-like.

GI: Gastrointestinal system much like human; two chambered stomach; appears one which holds solid contents; one which absorbs other material—empty, clean, when opened, emits slow and building howl. Rest of GI exam is unremarkable.

Lymph Nodes: N/A; does not appear to have them.

Musculoskeletal: Musculature appears capable of maintaining upright posture; creature found on left side in semi-curled position. Rigor present at time of discovery. Muscle thin and tightly adhered to bones, neon pink in color. Skeletal system appears similar to human.

Nervous System: Brain small, floats when placed in water, 6 distinct sulci. White in color. Appears to glow in dim light.

Creature’s organs replaced and open cavities closed with simple interrupted suture pattern. 

Cause of death is not identified. Suspect head trauma, cardiac event, stroke-like vascular event.

October 30 2021; Bastrop, Texas; 11:59 pm

A second necropsy was requested by authorities. Upon entering morgue, door was unlocked but closed. Freezer drawers had been emptied of contents of recently deceased, except for hearts, which were arranged in the shape of a humanoid figure on necropsy table. Creature no longer present in facility.

Clara Bush Vadala is a poet and veterinarian from Van Alstyne, TX. She has published two collections of poems: Prairie Smoke and Beast Invites Me In, and recent work of hers appears in Barren Magazine and Iron Horse Literary Review.

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