A hand with black fingers and exposed arteries
shamelessly shows itself near a railroad tie in broad daylight.
Hours of fetid heat and frequent showers
festered the folds of skin and uncovered areas of bone.
Just lying there, a hand,
and nobody reported it.
There's no way to know if the head is asleep in a hospital
or flaking away in another state somewhere along the East Coast line.
The local police release a report about efforts to trace
the train transporting a person of mangler tendencies;
forensics is brought in to compile a DNA profile
and if possible to expose the stages of detachment.
The media put forth analysts educated in psychology
to dramatize the dementia of such a perpetrator.
They investigate sinister influences
including poverty, drugs, and other abuses.
In the meantime, the hand is filmed and released
to a viewing audience
still missing major parts of humanity.
Bonnie reads "Detached Member"
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Bonnie confesses: The 1995 movie Citizen X influenced me in many ways. It's a story about a Russian serial killer who leaves bodies along a railroad line. And it's based on actual events. It bothers me that I'm entertained by such movies that show man's inhumanity to man.
BONNIE STANARD draws on her rural upbringing and an interest in history to write novels, short stories, and poems with credits in publications such as Persimmon Tree, Harpur Palate, The South Carolina Review, and Slipstream. She has published six historical fiction novels with a children’s book due out this fall. Website: www.bonniestanard.com/.