The Evils of Beef
By Rouillie Wilkerson
“They walk among us!” she bellowed, the tininess of her body accentuated by the step-up stool she stood on. She was wearing a thin, light blue cotton dress smothered with flower buds painted in blue with pips of yellow at their centers.
“Preach it Lindy girl,” hummed the resident minister along with the congregation. “They are an abomination unto the lord,” she said pointing to the mass of animals tromping past her. “Show them the light then show them the door to salvation so that their eyes will see the futility of their olden ways and surrender to the new ones set forth by god most high!” The minister then focused her intensity to the sky, her steepled hands pressing against an old wound concealed behind her blouse; heart surgery from a battle with heart disease, eighteen years prior.
“True!” bellowed a fat man with yellow coveralls holding tight to a pitch fork that he kept poking the cattle with as their flesh crackled and bubbled in the flames. The cattle had been anesthetized, to some degree, before being led into the fiery furnace. The Ones of the Way didn’t want to be cruel and mutually agreed that evil incarnate that tempted the great wooly flocks anointed by heaven most high must be held accountable for their dirty deeds and sent to judgment wide-eyed and awake.
The cows stumbled sleepily to the roaring furnace, which was a rental generally used for recycling all large manners of trash, like old busted-up wooden pallets and heavy duty cardboard via incineration. It had been set up with a cattle ramp, for just this occasion.
If there was any anxiety present in the doomed herd as they approached the flames, they didn’t let on, but seemed more aware, despite their anesthetized stupor, of the pitch fork piercing through singed hides that they couldn’t feel.
“Into the fire with sin!” chanted the motley of congregants.
“Let this be for everyone that has fallen before us in god’s country from cancer,” added the frail little girl with a swish of stringy blonde hair.
“Call the demon by name child!” bounced a young woman with an elaborate crown of corn-rows; she sported a tee-shirt that read, ‘SAVED’ in big red and white letters in a wave formation beneath a picture of a life vest.
A foreign transplant from Germany with a sickly disposition mumbled tearfully, “tank you lawd…send za evil avay.” He too wore a tee-shirt, it read ‘Cancer Survivor.’ His transparent skin was pulled tightly across his frame beneath long, white hair that hung straight along the curve of his head, missing the patterned baldness on top.
And the gathering continued this way late into the night until the entire pasture of stumbling, drooling, somewhat anesthetized cattle had met a flame-broiled end, saving the population in this small, sanctified, town from the temptations there in. No more fat, swollen figures, heart disease, and colon cancer to contend with, now that the evils of beef had been expunged from their midst.
Today, a harbinger of hell had been hung high from a tree, before being the first to be tossed into the furnace joined by his abominable cattle. Today a small town in a deep southern state has taken a stand against the evils that turned some of the residents own bodies against them. Taking the lives of their loved ones; forcing them to endure surgeries that sliced away and hacked off diseased breasts and scrotums; mortifying those stricken to suffer helplessly, as chemo treatments led to total hair loss and feeble bodies. Not to mention a fortune to contend with as bills mounted up that could never be paid off in a single lifetime; why the evils of beef just went on and on.
Yes, today a small town had triumphed, but tomorrow they will march to neighboring fast-food joints, slaughterhouses, ranches and factories armed with the will of god, a few weapons and tools to carry out their purpose, and a numbing injectable for evil incarnate and those that would perpetuate it. The Ones of the Way, though intolerant of malevolence, would deliver justice with mercy. “Purge them all!” chanted the congregation in unison with linked arms and clasped hands, as the deliciously evil scent of Barbecued name-your-favorite-cut wafted through the air, “Purge them all!”
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I’m a writer of fiction, poetry, and I’m working on a couple of novels (scifi and fantasy). I currently make my home in Anchorage, Alaska.
The Evils of Beef
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