by Jennifer Gough

The first time Billy saw Candy, she was eating a bowl of popcorn the size of a large beach ball. She was sitting on a park bench watching a three-legged dog run circles around a tree.

“Is he yours,” Billy asked.

Candy looked up from her popcorn and Billy stared at her eyes. They were crystal grey with smooth eyelids banking a delicate crease. He wanted to run the tip of his tongue along the edge; make her shiver.

“No.” One word, only, but she offered him some popcorn.

The next day Candy again sat in the park, but this time she ate cashew nuts. A small cup, and she didn’t offer any to Billy, but when she had finished she touched her fingertip to his lip. She made a small circle around the plumpest part, sending a tickle straight down his spine; an itch he couldn’t scratch. He grabbed her hand and sucked the tip of her finger into his mouth, tasted the leftover salt from the nuts.

That night Billy went to the grocery store. He selected a cart and slowly, deliberately, canvassed the store. Items lovingly chosen for shape, texture, taste, went into the cart. By the time he had reached the checkout, he had an erection so large he could barely walk.

At home he brought his shopping bags into the bedroom. He lived alone, yet he locked the door behind him. He stripped the blankets from the bed and pulled the white sheet tight around the corners of the mattress. A blank white sheet, ready for Candy.

A pretzel skeleton constructed with trembling hands. Marshmallow covered cupcake breasts with sourball nipples. He placed it all where he imagined it should go, where it was on Candy. He piled popcorn in her belly and arranged licorice around her head. Shining hard candy became eyeball jewels over cherry flavored soft sugar lips. A single triangle tortilla chip placed where her vulva should have been sent his hand down the front of his pants, and as he stroked himself over her snack food form he whispered her name. “Candy.”


Jennifer lives on a farm in Vermont. She spends many poignant moments with animals she will kill and eat.
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