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Concealed Backdrop

She found gingerbread stories so comforting
like cookie-tin grannies that she never had
or well-worn clichés warming under tea cosies
especially the part at the end
where the child abuser falls down the chimney
into a pot of boiling oil

These days she was a gingerbread cookie herself
children recognized their reflections inside her
dogs wagged tails at her
cats rubbed themselves along her legs
but she knew to beware of the specter within
waiting among the cobwebs in the corner
she woke in the night to feel his fingers
cutting into her life
heavy, capable, slicing her precisely
like an apple
all bony, hairy, long digits

She cut him into tiny pieces
deliberately yet with abstraction
buried lumps of him wrapped inside old newspapers
in thirteen different garbage bins
so that he could never be reconstructed
she never told a soul
and on her identity card she asked them to write
Father: unknown

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© Johnmichael Simon



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