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Poetry #343
(published August 16, 2007)
The Lobster
by Scott Taylor
she picked him up by the tail
and dropped him in the boiling water.
her lips kept moving,
her eyes shining
as she babbled on about some nonsense,
but all i could do
was watch the tail
convulse a few last times
as that lobster lay there,
head down in the boiling water.
then it occurred to me
that he had been
sitting there in that bag
all that time,
out of water,
slowly suffocating,
as she had been dancing around the kitchen
putting the groceries away
and making small talk.

then after some time,
she took the dead body
out of the water
and reached into the bag
for the second lobster.
"ow," she said, flinching,
"he pinched me."
"good," i thought.
then she did it again,
dropped him in
head first,
and i watched the tail
twitch futilely
as the second lobster agonized through
his last few seconds.

she brought the first one
to the table,
set it down,
and proceeded to
rip the shell off
piece by piece.
she tore into it
with relish,
yanking and ripping,
all the while
going on and on about where
she had been that day,
how her job was going,
who she was dating etc. etc.
but all i could hear
was that terrible
the sound of that carcass
being torn apart.

the lobster had a few seconds earlier
been crawling and gasping,
and now it was fish parts,
it was all cartilage and crushed pincers
and slimy dead white meat.

"so, how was your day?"
she asked me.

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