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He scratches at his ass and gives me my mother's stone axe head; there's no strength in my hands to hold it. It falls down, and the wise man hits my face so hard that blood comes out of my nose. "Now take it up," he says, "and dig her hole. So that the odd-smelling spirits do not come to her and make us sick when we breathe them in. So that the carrion-bird and carrion-dog come not. So that earth takes earth's due and thinks well of us, and that it is not hard below our feet." So the wise man says now, and, licking the blood from my nose, I dig hard in the dirt.
Below the grass the dirt is cold and grey, and soft enough that I can push a bunch of it up at once [?]. I dig to where there's roots and stones, and it slows me down. The bright dots of sunlight come back on my mother's face, then come off her cheek and slowly move off to between the grass and flowers. I lift up a stone, and there are many worms beneath it. Now I dig the blade of my mother's axe head between them, and they make even more of themselves. My digging makes my fingers bleed. There's blood on my mother's axe head, now; blood in my mother's hole.