The cannibals were behind bars strong enough to keep lions contained. They were the newest attraction at the zoo. You could hardly see past the sea of people to what was inside the enclosure.

Up! I demanded.

My father put me on his shoulders so I could see. There were four. A mother and a father and two children who were too small for me to tell if they were boys or girls.

The mother smiled at me in what I thought was a friendly way, exposing teeth that were sharp and wicked looking. Her face had two long streaks of burnt orange stripes painted on her cheeks. Her hair was dirty and tied into two fat braids.

Her husband sat at the table in the center, eating with his hands. He held a skull in one palm and was digging the meat out with his other hand. It was disgusting. I watched for an hour easily. Until my father's arms got tired and we had to go home.

Later we were eating dinner and I stared morosly at the bowl of stew I'd been served.

Daddy I wish we were cannibals, I said. They looked like such fun.

Maybe when you're older dear. Now eat your supper.


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jazberry (joined almost 12 years ago)

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