Cannibals by Suzanne Samples
I want to meet the pig who saved my life.
You, pig, were dead before I plunged your fluid under my skin. You were already slopped lifeless on the muddy ground when those wily Canadian researchers extracted your pancreatic glands and sucked your fat dry. You had exhaled your last squeal, projected your final porcine pleas before we could make awkward eye contact and I could thank you.
I think of you nosing through the spatter in your trough when my blood sugar drops, when I am fisting cold spaghetti into my mouth because I do not have the strength to open the juice container. I think of you when I cannot find my gas station muffin and can of soda because hypoglycemia has blurred my vision and I cannot see my counters, my sink, my very own hooves.
I think of you flopping, rolling dryly in the sun when my blood sugar rises and I need that fix. I think of you when I need your pulp to rehydrate me, when I need your identical properties to fill the sad, drooping balloons of my desiccated veins.
I think of you engaging in an unrequited love affair with a much slimmer pig — one who does not appreciate your life-saving qualities, an unforgiving swine who thinks you make too many barn messes and cannot control your political impulses—when I am romping in the beds of future ex-lovers. I think of your rejection when the people I have turned into mistakes do not understand how blood sugar levels affect moods, relationships, existence.
If we had met, if I had gotten the opportunity to feel the bristle of your rind under my thankful hand, I would have asked you to dinner.
I would have dressed you up, I would have leashed you to my wrist, and we would have eaten anything we goddamn well pleased. I would have refused to count the carbohydrates in the bread basket, I would have made you tongue the tomatoes off my plate, and I would have let you snort black pudding off my bruised, bloody abdomen.
We would have glanced at one another before I injected your parts into my own. We would have laughed gleefully from across the table, not caring about stares, judgment.
I would have stroked your jowl in those final moments, synchronized my breath to your sacrifice. I would have stared through the anterior chambers of your withering brown eyes, felt your Kantian spirit exit your shank and fade into the annals of modern medicine, into the depths of my insulin-starved soul.
I would have thanked you, pig, thanked you for being so much like me.
I would have thanked you for allowing me to consume you whole.
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