from "A Bestiary in Progress" - the Armabrach

Robert Kloss

Illustration by Matt Kish

It is said all man’s misdeeds may be attributed to Armabrach, a species of atom that swims the blood tides and makes savage man’s heart, clouds his brain and perplexes his eyes. It is sometimes said that this beast no more than a speck of dust must remove the soul, if for a moment, for how else may the flesh of man so easily move contrary to the god placed goodness in man? Now where once a man benevolent moves a figure cruel and strange. So we have watched a child murder a dog, a snake, a fly. So we have seen brothers cast down brothers and husbands do so with wives. So was Heracles moved to slaughter wife and son, made a beast before their pleas, and when Armabrach passed, he awoke without remembrance, as a man returned from a dream. And so the tide of nations may too fall under influence, great plague of small thing, enslavements and wars and eradications. No more this species, sayeth the speck, and so it is done. 

 About the Writer

Robert Kloss is the author of The Alligators of Abraham and the co-author of The Desert Places (with Amber Sparks and Matt Kish).


Matt Kish is a self-taught illustrator from Ohio. His work can be found at