looked up in to sky
we are cockroaches
she told her husband that evening at dinner
as he sat trying to eat fast so he could check his messages
annoyed and perpetually irritated with her queries and words
he wished momentarily he could seal her in an Amazon Prime box
and return her with a free print it yourself label
if only marriage were as easy as that to dissolve
okay I’ll take the bait, why are we cockroaches?
he replied eventually with a weary voice, if only to get her to stop
standing with wet hands from washing in the kitchen center
unaware of how absurd and unattractive she was
with her rolled shoulders and sagging bust line
why can’t she look like the girls I subscribe to?
a lazy thought passed behind his eyes as he vainly tried
to show a modicum of interest
we are cockroaches she repeated
her face blazing underneath the low hanging light fixture
he’d installed badly
because bees and frogs and bats
if they die out we all go
She slapped her red hands together making a strange squelching sound
her lips twitching oddly
But if we
with our Sistine chapels, Leonardo’s
drive-in Sonic Burger, Schlitterbahn water parks
Round-Up, teenage sized tampons and driverless cars
if we die … IF WE DIE!
Her voice raised an octave and dominated the quiet room
he thought her shrill and unbearable
a streak of sweat
began to gnaw at his calf as it ran slowly toward his socks
socks she had to bleach after he left them unwashed and yellowed in his cupboard
resisting the urge to itch he tried to stay motionless, could it be if he blinked she would be gone?
If we die NOTHING HAPPENS!
But if we live … as we live … when we have lived
such a short time comparatively if you think
watch the years before us, long and steady
now watch the timeline unruffled by menace
as we come into being that trajectory takes on an awful shape
the shape of destruction! Not only will nothing happen to every other living thing
on earth if we are not here to witness it
but the damage we have wrought in such a short time!
so much damage!
we breed animals and slaughter them inhumanely in abattoirs
we condemn Nazi’s for gassing Jews and gypsies
but how are some of our actions so different?
we deny basic healthcare to our most vulnerable citizens
and call ourselves progressive or worse
blame those who are not able
to defend themselves
He wiped his face with his meaty hand; This isn’t going to be another vegetarian rant is it?
rubbing the sweat from underneath his eyes
it seemed to be getting very hot in the room
there wasn’t any chilli in dinner was there? He asked as
something seemed to stick quite determinedly in his throat
feeling nauseous he reached for the glass of water
it looked like it was sweating too
the room was too hot
turn the damn air conditioning up he raised his voice and began
to sound as shrill as she had
you know nothing you say will stop me eating meat
and I don’t agree with you but then thinking about it
I rarely do
you care about abstracts
you point to diagrams that show ‘evolutionary’ destruction at the hands of humanity
and even if this is so
look at our progress
look at our knowledge
What knowledge? What mercy?
We still can’t cure the common cold
she retorted with her back turned to him
she appeared to be drying the dishes he couldn’t remember giving her
the room was spinning
I don’t feel well, he said
lurching slightly in place
I wouldn’t think you would
she replied, he could not see her face
only the stains of sweat underneath her thick arms
reaching around like hands behind her
you always felt animals were equal to us and they just aren’t
he tried to modulate his voice but it had grown
as if he were contained within glass being slowly
like a spider you find in the tall grass and collect
for Monday’s school project
I don’t feel well, he repeated
his eyes rolling in their waxy sockets, his tongue lolling
that would be the castor bean oil
I mixed it into your dinner
as calm as if she were saying out loud
Sunday’s grocery list or tonight’s TV programming
and shutting the kitchen door
she left her husband
who by now was unable to speak
a small mercy for them both
and taking off her house slippers she stepped out
into the back where the mature trees reached high into the night
very purposely and with great care
to dig a hole
deep enough to bury
85 thoughts on “Cockroach”
Thank you M, missed you here, appreciative of YOU I definitely agree with what you said my friend so true.
I’m sorry! It was very much tongue-in-cheek I promise! I am not itching to get a shovel! It was more a parody or humor-bound version of things. Thank you dear Jupiter Girl for putting up with my eccentricities!
Ah good question. Sometimes I think the very best of us will never inherit the earth but would rather leave it to the evil ones who seem to thrive here, other times I think biblically despite not being religious, that karma will take care of everything. Not sure what side of the fence I’m on. But I do believe you get back what you put out. You are good – so good will come back to you. Sometimes it takes its sweet time getting there! xoxoxo
You’re stronger than you know!
You are so welcome my dear.
I feel exactly the same about you.
I love your sense of humor! I just wasn’t sure that’s what you were expressing here! I’m glad to know that’s what it was!❌⭕️😘
I would like to think karma is the ticket!! 😚
ha ha ha! You should call the police if it wasn’t! 😉
Thank you for saying that!
It could be out of print, but if not I highly recommend it
I look at you and say to myself, she’s stronger than I am. You’ve accomplished so much and I don’t that much about your struggles. You’re a Survivor first, never forget it.
You’re so funny!!! Je t’aime, N😘😘😘
Thank you Candice.. 🙂
This is vicious and dark and I love love love it. This should be a Roald Dahl story
lmao, I knew the minute you said it the second time, “we are cockroaches” that she was going to kill him. loved it! should’ve done it to my first x… thanks for the giggles.
and ps.. that is a wicked fn pic
ha ha ha! Now you have me in peals of laughter! I’m so glad you liked it lovely one!
Oh my friend, I loved your use of vicious, that’s exactly the tenor I was attempting and yes, I confess I am a huge Roald Dahl fan, mostly for My Uncle Oswold, Kiss Kiss, Over To You. Who writes like that anymore? When I heard he was not over-fond of children and everyone was aghast I thought … haven’t you READ him? Of course he is! That’s what makes him so good! I am fairly sure I would not bury a husband, wife or nay, even a lover, unless really pushed to do so, maybe if they ate the last of the rhubarb pie, that might do it 😉 (thank you thank you thank you)
I think Dahl is very under appreciated, his short stories are great and vicious. More in this vein please.
It was most unlike me, but I shall try to return to that state of being. If you see me on the news being handcuffed it’s all your fault 😉 Seriously though, Tales of the Unexpected was penned by him also wasn’t it? Such a dark mind … delicious
Yes I have his collected short stories there is a great one about the artist Soutine called Skin… brilliant.
I like a boatload of what you write also, but I don’t have internet anymore, so no time to just browse and enjoy. I fired both AT&T and Verizon…lol greedy b’s… thanks for the lovely comments tho, I’ll try to hit your site at hot spots, along with the other 20 or so… 🙂 tc
Wow!! I so got into this my face was coming nearer and nearer the computer screen with each line. Bloody amazing, Candice!
Explosive and awe-inspiring! love this, Shieldmaiden. ❤
Thank you so much both for reading this and commenting, it is very appreciated. Sorry for the late reply I have been feeling a little under the weather. Thank you again!
Thank you darling girl, it was a bit Tales of the Unexpected wasn’t it? Different for me, more like my novel. I should send it to you but you might hate it so I can’t 😉 Anyway … sorry I’ve been absent been really sick with a stomach bug or something. Sending you so much love to the most beautiful girl I know inside and out. PS NOT LONG NOW is it? ARGHHHH! Get ready!
You’re welcome and I’m sorry to hear you aren’t feeling well. Hope you feel better soon! ❤
I hope you’re feeling better, lovely special one. As if I could possibly hate anything you wrote! And anyway, I loved THIS so by your own admission I would like the novel too?
Yes I know I can’t wait! We are going to MELT our phones with messages about it, I can feel it 😉
You’d better be my main dragon-girl for it, because you totally made me die laughing the last time, you are hilarious, and few manage to be beautiful AND hilarious, so brava my twin
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