BY ROBERT VAUGHAN
As the floss slides in and out I think of the guillotine. Her head on the chopping block.
I’d be thinking what bill did I forget to pay.
Who’s e-mail didn’t I return.
Instead she was praying to some unforeseen deity.
Before becoming a severed head.
I don’t like our neighbors and I envy their number. A perfect dozen: ten kids, two sets of twins, Molly and Millie, Timmy and Tommy. And the ideal parents: Trina and Marco. Doting, athletic, loving- all facets of family that are completely foreign to me. I’m adopted. No siblings. My parents both work. My home school teacher, Fern, lives in our garage apartment. She pretty much raised me.
I always wanted a brother.
I could tease him. Beat the shit out of him.
Squeeze him till he can’t breathe.
“Most people don’t like a sarcastic cancer patient actually,” I said.
Aunt Sally replied, “Well, most people don’t have cancer.”
I drove her to her chemo treatments on Mondays, my day off. This was her third round. I turned up the radio.
She re-applied lipstick, turned it back down. “And what’s so bad with a little sarcasm every now and then?”
Here we go.
“Saved your Uncle Tony’s and my marriage. Maybe you shoulda tried a little sarcasm with your ex-wife?”
I turned the radio back up.
Robert Vaughan’s plays have been produced in N.Y.C., L.A., S.F., and Milwaukee where he resides. He leads two writing roundtables for Redbird- Redoak Studio. His prose and poetry is published or forthcoming in: Short, Fast, and Deadly, 50 to 1, Tryst, Clutching at Straws, Blink/Ink, Heavy Bear, The Lesser Flamingo, Negative Suck, and Sleep. Snort. Fuck. He is a fiction editor at jmww magazine. His blog: http://rgv7735.wordpress.com.