Jodi Arias sings Dido’s “Here With Me” while she waits for the detective. People will be surprised she no longer has blond hair—that’s not the Jodi we knew—& that she can really, really sing. The vibrato on the word “breathe” is like the satisfaction of pulling a loose thread & undoing a hem. It’s believable. I believe it. She scrapes the label off the water bottle like the way he used to undress her.
Court testimony characterizes their relationship as physical without much tenderness, & Nancy, the court reporter, winces every time she punches “anal” into her stenotype, especially since its mostly vowel. Jodi sketches Snow White with a black eye severe. A pentagram. A wad of toilet paper we mistake for a carnation.
When Nancy leaves work, she hums Jodi’s hymn, pictures his body’s confusion in blood. I’ve seen the crime scene photos, & they didn’t shock me as much as I thought they would. Like strangling an ant pile, I can imagine wrapping my hands around a man’s neck. Filling his skull with a bullet of ants. Slicing a neck by tying a ribbon of blade into a strict knot. Each digital camera flash, a match ignited into fantasy, & for a moment, I cradle, very close to me, violence.