Written by Benjamin Weissman
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When I turn 15, an age where I could be of some use, I am compelled to pick up a lead pipe and beat one of my mother’s suitors in the head until he is bloody and without pulse. Even though the men are bigger than me — on another night I beat a second man as well — they are easy to destroy with their heads facing down, always on top of my mother’s. Killing her customers is not something she appreciates me doing, but I do it nonetheless, spontaneously, and I clean up all the blood and brain matter with soapy water and many sponges. Three hours after midnight I roll the men into garbage bags and drag them with great effort to the town dump. Since the men never tell anyone where they are going when they visit us, we never have trouble with the police. I pull out a kitchen knife and stab my football until it is dead. One night I stab my mom. Slit her throat. She is plastered on cold sake. I’d like to say it was an accident, but that would be untrue. Everyone in our neighborhood knows my mom is a prostitute. I kill her before someone else does. It’s better that her son be the one. Along with instructions on how to gouge a person’s eyes out, the Bible recommends that we clean the feet of our loved ones with the hair on our head. I dig a three-foot hole in the ground of the public park where townies bury their pets and that is where my mom rests in peace, bless her worried gutted soul. I pack up a knapsack with a plunger, hammer, pipe, hose, razors, wooden sandals, and a pith helmet, anything hard and sharp that can be used as a weapon. In the middle of the night I walk 10 miles to a new neighborhood, sleep under a bridge in a cardboard box.
(in Bloodthirsty Man)
© 2004 Benjamin Weissman; New York: Akashic Books