July 30, 2014 Fiction



Fiction today features Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois’ ‘Broken Toyland’ while Okwudili Nebeolisa’s describes ‘How To Break A Young Man’s Heart’




Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois



Rescue animals are grateful, but they’re not as naive as they once were. The gourmet chicken and fish dog food, even the cherished lamb treats, carry a bitter aftertaste. They know the human who is kind today may abandon them tomorrow. Then, once again, they will be incarcerated where the smell of Death is like Legionnaire’s Disease, pouring through the ventilation system. Again they will gnaw on the bars and break their teeth and try to block out reality and hope for a new human who might be kind to them tomorrow.

Down the dirt road, the rabbits in Broken Toyland have heads whose stitching is unraveling. Mother Rabbit holds a jug of poison moonshine. She wears a necklace of skull and crossbones and a perpetual sneer because she remembers the days when rabbits were symbols of innocence. Now all the innocence is gone. It might have been a myth, but it was a good myth. She enjoyed it. Now there is nothing left.

Her husband smokes a joint, and talks about moving to Colorado where they smoke dope legally day and night and forget all the things that have gone wrong in their lives. He remembers when his wife could reliably pop out a litter of twelve, and coat their nest box with fine warm fur. But that was a long time ago, and she has used up all her eggs.

The pitchfork he holds is rusted, and the idea of American Gothic no longer thrills him. The sun in the sky is prickly, like a porcupine, and gives little light and no heat. It is lucky they are furred, but their fur is mangy now, bare in places, and smells of barns and feral cats.

Broken Toyland once held allure, the mystique of the outlaw, but it’s no longer where they want to be. However, they have no choice. Broken Toyland is all they know. They have no transportation, and public buses have stopped running out here, so far into the country.



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