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A Recipe

When the scorpion fell into the porcelain sink bowl

From somewhere above your head as you were shaving

That time in Costa Rica when we had just met

And I was boiling water on the stove in the kitchen

You shouted for me to come and see the strange sight

Of this creature never before seen by you or me

Now caught in our dilemma as it scrabbled helplessly.

Scratching desperately at the slippery surface of its prison

We quickly discussed its potential lethality

Might it kill us ; must we kill it ?

Fear decided and we banged through drawers to find tongs

You carefully grabbed it’s hard body , it curled and struck

With shocking force against the metal restraint

And together we marched it to the boiling pot of water

Once submerged, we peered down to see its final twitch

Once cooled , with some remorse , we removed the dead thing

And placed it on the wooden table outside where we ate our meals

The ants came quickly and devoured all of its soft parts by noon

Just its exoskeleton remained , an ornamental sculpture

It decorated our table for the full two weeks

To become a daily topic of discussion, fascination , and regret

That time we encountered a potentially lethal scorpion

That time …. Before we knew each other well.

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