Failing foresight, 20/20
An analogy for ethics and humanity, a future retrospective. You will be perceived pitilessly in 50 years.
I am a bartender on a boat, or maybe a resteraunt manager on a cruise ship.
I have three daughters, one has red hair, one black, and one blond.
They have hypnotized the pigs so they don’t mind when we slaughter them, and they wander around docile as bunnies. Loyal as dogs. eyes vacant and the kind of pale you only see as a storm palls the sun, sucking all the color from the world.
My daughters are playing while I work. I’m carrying a pigs head on a silver platter, there is an apple in its mouth. Another one walks at my side, like an old friend, eyes glassed over, vacant, it has no idea that i’m carrying its brothers head. My daughters are playing. Twirling in their white dresses, luxuriating in the freedom of flight as their minds free them from the confines of gravity.
As I set down the platter a voice drifts from the kitchen, “mommy” it whispers. My heart drops, pulsating in my stomach. I look over at my daughters, they are not playing anymore. The one with red hair looks up at me, arm clutched to her chest, eyes wide “someone needs help” she says. The words reverberate in my ears, ricocheting in my brain, bouncing from ear to ear, back and forth fading as the knot tightens in my stomach. “I know” slips from my lips with a vague feeling of inadequacy knocking at my intestines. I can feel my children’s eyes bore into my back. I reach the kitchen. Light comes only from the industrial refrigerator, spilling onto an emaciated sow, ribs protruding through taught pale skin. A baby pig is next to it whimpering. she had broken the hypnosis to feed her child, but there was not enough for both of them. All my organs switch places my stomach is in my mouth, my heart is floating in bile, and everything else has fallen out, ears ringing, brain fumbling through static. “mommy” it repeats looking through me, it knows what I have done.
3:00 am my heart tries to break my ribs. The light from the refrigerator cuts across my bedroom, I haven’t taken a breath in hours, the water has drained from my body. I am nothing but dust and sand encased in a skin tomb. The future is bright.