Thursday, July 16, 2009

I saw what I was

by Willie Smith

Start with left leg. Well, no. Start with restarting Homelite. Amputate right right after left. Swing back – seated on stove top, arms elevating torso – to cauterize hip stumps on burners.
None of this feels good. Payoff is watching twitch bloody hunks no longer me. Sprouts an understanding of why.
Take off southpaw at shoulder. Topple over cauterize that. There glints the ring once linked to the wife sawed up earlier tonight. Callouses from where I carved out a living sawing down trees. Now saw off saw arm.
Prop device in lap. Lean into whizzing chain. Right flops to floor.
Next roll over on the Homelite to behead the daylights out of what remains. But think first a bit, peering over edge of stove at four limbs pickup-sticked between the Frigidaire, the sideboard, the kitchen sink:
Every step I took, every card I dealt, dumped on the floor, while next to my ear the Homelite – set to do so – roars and roars. Something no lion can. Either roar that loud that long or contemplate self-removed parts.
Stare at the limbs begin to assemble a dream. Swivel back onto the saw, sawing into tonight the claws of the hammer in the sentence I was.

Bio:Willie Smith is deeply ashamed of being human. His work celebrates this horror. His novel OEDIPUS CADET is available at or from Black Heron Press. His story collections SOLID GAS, GO AHEAD SPIT ON ME, EXECUTION STYLE and STORIES FROM THE MICROWAVE are collector's items. More of his work can be viewed by googling "deeply ashamed of being human."

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