local_library Chicken Skin

by Eva Langston

Published in Issue No. 193 ~ June, 2013

The old hag, alone in the candy cottage,

stood at her sink separating a chicken.

Ripping open the legs,

she revealed a compote of innards

that smelled of sweat and slime.


She read her future in its entrails,

and put the heart, like an apricot,

to her lips for a bloody chew.

She peeled off the pimpled skin,

dropping it in the trash like a used

yellow condom, sticky and stretched.


The meat was cold

and made the brittle bones

in her knuckles ache.

But she enjoyed the feeling of flesh

against her fingers,

and the thought that something dead

could continue to be of use.

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Eva Langston received her MFA from the University of New Orleans, and her fiction has been published in The Normal School, The Sand Hill Review, and the GW Review, among others. Currently she works as a Skype tutor for Ukrainians, a math curriculum writer, and a bar trivia hostess. Follow her adventures at inthegardenofeva.com.