For the short story reader. Updated every Monday.

The Short Form

“The Victim's Body”

Mike Meginnis

Excerpt

This body's the body that went to the gym; that struggled with weight; that bought the ice cream; that wore the sweat suit; that ate the ice cream, plastic spork, television television; that chewed the ice cream with its teeth; whose teeth were numb of nerve and stripped of their enamel; whose teeth were soft things; that rode the exercycle till the exercycle broke; that went home without buying frozen pizza, but in its hunger ordered fresh from Domino's. This body's the body melted extra cheese over the pizza in its oven, which charred the crusts, the pepperonis.

This body's the body that pushed shopping carts through the Wal-Mart's side entrance.

This body's the body that ate the Frito Lays.

 

This body's the body that did not wash fruits. It collected all their stickers on the underside of its desk, where other bodies keep their snot.

This body's the body that loved a man's body, that kissed his body on its mouth.

The man's body was a veteran of a war. The man's body had lost several fingers and its only nose. It wears a prosthetic nose. It sells brooms on the corner, at the edge of the gas station parking lot, under shadow of telephone pole and electric line. The man's body has no alibi. The man's body was seen arguing with the victim's body two days before the body was found. The victim's body was not seen between this argument and its finding there, in the dumpster. It did not go to work at the Wal-Mart. It did not shop there either.

We read it in Red Lightbulbs.