"Sever the Limb to Spare the Body"
Autopsy table space is always
at a premium in this town. Some guy
could be in the middle of a bowl
of pasta fagioli and bam, down he goes.
Not to mention tales—only told
in the police station when the night
watch is drunk—of families known
to eat their young. Discarded bones
wash up on the banks of the Housatonic
nine months later, are attributed
to mutant salmon. The coroner here
is an appointment for life, a status
reminiscent of pontiffs, hatchetmen.
Twist the weasel, wear your hair
wrapped in panda skin. Three ninja
appear at your door with a message.
Introduce themselves as Hiroyuki,
Kanazawa, and Marcus. The message
self-destructs, but by the time the ashes
hit the floor the four of you are off
to the city dump. Mutant salmon
can't swim that far upstream, bucko.
You take out your cell phone. Speed-dial
the coroner. You know he'll salivate
at the news. Your audience awaits.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Robert Beveridge makes noise (xterminal.bandcamp.com) and writes poetry just outside Cleveland, OH. Recent/upcoming appearances in Pulsar, Tessellate, and Scarlet Leaf Review, among others.