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Metro Meats was a slaughterhouse here in town that employed a lot of young people during the seventies. My aunty used to work there, but a number of young men, some still alive, but older now, did their best to ruin her time at the place.

They once locked her in a cold, dark freezer room, as a joke, but the joke went too far when she felt a finger inside her. Then, through word of mouth, they heard of compensation payouts, and some of them would amputate their own thumbs in front of her with the upright bonesaw. To them, it was nothing.

My town, the town of Eugene, is like a lot of small towns, and it has its horror stories.

There was one kid I remember, Danny Mullen, who had a thing for showing off to the girls on his BMX bicycle. He would play chicken with oncoming cars up on Matthews Avenue and one day he lost, getting hit, hit hard, pinned beneath the vehicle, and dragged about a hundred meters down the road. I remember his teeth rolling to rest in the muddy silt of the gutter and the Police never did find his nose.

In nineteen eight-six, a young man, Shawn Ingamells, only seventeen, was found murdered just out of town, by the the side of the road. He was placed there two days after his death, Police found.

He worked as an apprentice mechanic and his boss was infatuated with him.

It was Christmas Eve and both men got together on the pretext of having a few beers, watching some porn, smoking some weed. The young man was found just after New Years, butterflied from his dick to his chin, filled with dirt, bullets, additional knife wounds, and had been burned in an old iron drum.

The people who found him thought he was the carcass of a decomposing animal.

That's Christmas around here sometimes.

Nineteen ninety saw the Rural Technology High School massacre. All the animals in the science department had been slaughtered, but the bodies were missing, never to be recovered, and all that remained on the cages were bits of intestine. Dogs were blamed, but Darren Black, a student, was found to have done it. His explanation was that the black rabbit belonged to him and Suzette had been feeding it.

There was no black rabbit and there was no Suzette. It's believed he ate the evidence, or passed it on to his family as food.

My town, the town of Eugene, is like a lot of small towns, and it has its horror stories.

I still live here.



The End



BIO: I live in Orange, New South Wales, Australia. I have one child -a daughter. I was born in 1977. My poetry has appeared in anthologies world wide, and my short stories have appeared in men's magazines. I cite James Herbert, Tales from the Crypt, vintage Penny Dreadfuls, and Ripley's Believe It, or Not as an influence.


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