The girls may have been 4 and 7; their mamie was in town,
winter, Christmas Eve, 2003.
We had live lobsters swimming in a pot most of the day.
Jordyn watched the claws open and close slowly.
“What does a lobster eat?”
I had to look it up.
And when 7 o’clock rolled, my mother in law filled a great big pot with water,
turned up the flame high, and salted the water.
I kept the children entertained with decorating dessert.
At lightening speed, before we could recover, she tosses the lobsters in,
quickly takes them out and slams them onto a platter, stabs them
down the middle, with a butcher’s knife, one, two, three, four,
crack, split, crack, split, crack, split, crack split, her hair tossed back.
I turned my head to look at them, their little mouths agape, eyes
wide open in disbelief and dismay, stilled by the violence
they had never seen before; a Christmas they always remember.
Add a few more dollars to the therapy jar–and more.