A mud ball rolled up to a cliff and dried there. It was the kind of place where seeds could grow; the kind of lump that would accumulate in the right storms; a home to one animal that planted. The one animal dried as the mud did: a stick baby. The cliff above the ball froze as it too dried. In the ice, what was still living tunneled, cut holes to breathe. The holes looked down on the mud ball. The living eventually leapt. On the ball, they found only one stick baby, so naturally: swallowed, built fire, consumed. Or, the living found only one stick baby, so naturally: God, Queen, King. Or, the living found only one stick baby and a barren ball, so: the living leapt, left. Stick baby, eventually too hot, climbed holes into the ice and homed there, slept. The mud ball, eventually too dry, rolled away to find a sip. What was frozen melted. The living drift. But a cliff is a cliff is a cliff is a cliff.