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Electric Bath

by: Danielle Lea Buchanan

The chicks are chirping. The doctor spreads me wide and shines his incubator light. He twists my clitoris doorknob. My vagina swings open like a battery cage. Straw, yolk and feathers mulch out of my hatchery. The assistants pull out baby ducks. Duck beaks stick out all bloody carrot-like. Breathe, they say. Wings stretch through my fallopian tubes. The claws of a webbed foot catch in my cervix. The females are thrown into black garbage bags. A pipe pokes in and they are gassed with CO2. The males are swung upside down. Bashed against steel tables. Their necks twist several rotations. Their heads hang to their feet, attached by a single nerve. My babies! What are you doing with my babies! I wake when the conveyor belt rolls. My head slams against a wall. Thick shanks shoved into metal shackles. A motor kicks. I’m driven to the electric bath. A tub of water with a low voltage. Fizzes like ginger ale. The electricity pops in bubbles. I struggle. Neck snaps. In the electric bath. A chain brings me back up. There is a moment of stillness of silence of muscles contracting the back arching legs extending when the eyes don’t blink then the motor kicks and I’m driven to the kill machine. A blade. My body folded. Whipped to rest in a glass cup. Stabbed with a spoon. Sprigs of parsley sprinkled like tears on the grave.