Confessional Caterpillars we crushed to know the color of their guts. Worms impaled on fishing hooks, guillotined by reckless trowels. The baby chick I tread on, the golden fleece I cradled until its warmth went out. The raccoon in my headlight beams, a dervish blacker than the pavementís black. Lobsters in cauldrons, one held under when roiled too shallowly. Crabs with arms as long as mine and more elbows. Whole schools of shrimps, embalmed with butter. Crawfish shelled like peanuts tossed off the balcony. I remember an impossibly small leg on a plate, but not to whom it belonged. Once in Florida, an alligator. Bugs drowned in buckets of paint, painted onto the house when they didnít flee in time. A nest of hornets knocked from the eaves with a broom. Flies hysterical on fly-paper. Aphids, poisoned. Roaches, likewise. Then, stomped on. Goldfish. Many. Flushed. Rat poison deployed in the cellar; chewing sounds stopped coming from the floor. Most nights I sleep like any animal, curled against the cold, dreaming my sins are innocent.
© Abby Paige