By Rebecca Foley
On the first of May, they dig her up.
Each bone is exposed to the cold air with tender, methodical sweeps of the brush. The gentle curve of her spine, the vulnerable notch of her clavicle. She is curled in on herself.
They marvel at the detail of a bronze clasp, the utility of a belt dagger. This is who she was, they say. This is what her nose looked like. This is what she ate. They hold her with surgical-gloved fingers and wipe dirt out of her crevices with q-tips.
On the third of June, she arrives at the museum.
They spread her on a white plinth. Around her are notecards, describing the angle of her pelvis and the healed fracture of her left radius. She is surrounded by empty air and smooth glass.
There is something in the texture of her that is like tree bark, something inherently warm and rough under the pad of a fingertip. There is something in her that expands and contracts the ribcage in a soft sigh and tightens the tendons in a shiver. She is achingly lonely.
This is what she is, the notecards say: A single blow to the head. 1200BC.