Margin: Exploring Modern Magical Realism

S H O R T   S T O R Y
BOILED HIM
b y   n o r m a n d i   e l l i s   ~   f r a n k f o r t ,   k e n t u c k y

AND ATE him... but that wasn't the end of the story, although she did live happily ever after. First, she had to throw up violently in the front yard, not once, not twice, but fourteen times for every year she'd swallowed her anger. And she had to run naked down the two-lane highway, clawing at her face, her breasts, her arms and legs until she'd torn off all her old skin and run truly naked down the highway, leaving bloody footprints.

They say the trucker who saw this grim, red, raw creature trapped in his headlights ran his semi off the road and crashed into a tree. They say his last words were "My God! It was still alive!"

She ran into the cellar of an old woman's house and stayed for several months in the dark, living off withering potatoes. Finally, after several weeks, she was inching her way around the basement, eating green leafy vegetables and fruits from china plates she'd found left at the top of the stairs each morning. At last she waited by the door, and when the old woman opened it and caught sight of her, she said, "So! You boiled and ate the bastard, but I see now you're still alive." She thrust some shoes and a dress through the door. "Here, put on these clothes."

And when at last she opened the door and entered the room upstairs, the world was made of crinkled light, the mirrors reflected a thousand flowers and the room was filled with her fresh-fleshed sisters.

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Rev'd 2004/08/20