“Teeth”

Rodney’s teeth fell out one by one and every morning he woke up and found a dollar under his pillow. I looked back into his pink shaky throat under the porch light. Moths flew around his donkey face. He wanted me to reach in and yank out what I could. One came out soft as a jelly bean, maybe from the ice cream that his daddy brought for him and Mama. After Rodney had enough teeth dollars, he bought a dog. Lady died a week after he bought her. Her hair was soft and dusty. She got squished down flat with her black blood squeezed out into the gutter and her eyes popped and her tongue stuck out like she was happy. Rodney left her food out for a week, and then dared me to eat some. I did, and he laughed and Mama came in and laughed too, so I laughed. The dog food tasted like liver and sawdust, and I spat some out when I laughed. Mama stopped laughing and told me to eat it. She crossed her arms and said it again: eat that up.

Lucas Flatt

About Lucas Flatt

Lucas Flatt's work has appeared in Slow Trains. He edits Barely South Review.