by Jeffrey Murrell

Chapter 5
The Woman

"Wake up, nigger! Are yuh comin' to?"
cracked her voice through the dark;
his eyes wrapped tightly around with his bandanna,
his wrists behind him bound
with coarse, taught rope and twine,
as were his feet to the legs of the chair
she had planted him in so good.
"Ah see yuh were admirin' mah collection;
Ah know everyone of 'em bah heart.
And they all know me 'round these parts!
Everyone o' them gotta name;
everyone o' them knows mah name,
and they all know better than to cross this door,
'cause with everyone o' them Ah gotta score
to settle, a price they gotta pay
if they want to keep on the same ol' way
without no tragedies messin' up their lives,
and to keep off o' mah bad side!"
He pulled at the ropes on his legs and arms;
"Let me de hell up off here, bitch!
Git dis shit untied!"
She cackled coyly--he felt hands on his thighs;
"Oh, y'er a live one now, ain'tcha?
Yes sir, jist what Ah need . . ."
"Damn! The blood's cut off from my hands, dis shit's so tight!"
"Oh, yer hands ain't what Ah want jist now, boy!
Now, let's see what yuh got 'tween these thighs!"
He felt leathery hands up and down his legs,
then feeling up around his fly,
then zipping it open, undoing the snap,
and wandering around inside . . . .
"Bitch! Git off me!" He struggled to peek under the blind;
her hands worked slyly, resurrecting remote
thoughts in his head of feelings
and sensations he couldn't deny.
Then he felt her weight on his lap,
"Oh, now--but ain't that nice?"
And her bony hips gyrated in circles
as he felt his naked thighs under hers,
and he struggled to prevent it from happening,
blind and tied down helplessly,
unable to save any dignity
from his cruel, unknown assailant.
He could only try to let go, give up and hope
that it would soon be all over.
He would just have to ignore it and leave his body
by focusing on the crickets outside
and the groaning of the frogs;
but she groaned so much he couldn't give up,
forced back to the grizzly reality.
"Oh yes, boy--them hands ain't what Ah want!"
she groaned, gyrating circles lustfully;
"No, this here's what Ah want yuh for!
(This, and a little somethin' more!)
Yeah, yuh prob'ly thought yuh come here bah accident.
But truth to tell, Ah got some pretty high friends
that do a whole, whole lot for me.
Ah jist prayed and prayed, and here yuh came!
Yes sir, they do a lot for me."
She finally got down off him,
pulled his drawers back up, but left his fly unzipped,
cackling to herself now and again.
"Bitch, you gonna pay fo' dis!"
"Oh, yes--that Ah'll do soon enough.
But in the meanwhile, friend, yuh gonna git to know me,
and we gonna have some more fun!"
Clump-hop, clump-hop, then he heard a clink--
the pot's lid
as she tended to what it held,
sour-smelling, bubbling and splattering,
enough in there to feed her for years,
or maybe up until she dies.
"And y'er a sassy nigger, ain'tcha?
Come all the way over here from Orleans, didja?
A big-city nigger! Ain't that nice!
Yes sir, the niggers 'round here too skinny for me,
too skinny for what Ah got in mind."
"Damn, bitch! Take dis shit off me! Let me see!"
"Oh, Ah 'spose that wouldn't hurt none . . ."
Clump-hop, clump-hop, she came over, undid the knot
behind his head and pulled down his bandanna blind.
Clump-hop! He squinted to see through the swaying light,
swaying just over the table.
He strained to see his captor's face,
to see what she looked like.
But she returned to her stove before his vision cleared,
stirring things into her pot,
facing away with her back to him,
a small figure of a woman, he thought,
with stringy grey hair, more like yellowing black,
wearing a long, grey cotton skirt
and a ratty black shawl over her sweat-stained shirt;
and under the big table he could see
black leather boots on her feet,
and a cypress cane she leaned on.
"Yes sir, them Orleans niggers the best kind,
for what Ah got in mind!"
she hissed, turning around in the light,
jagged black teeth, gaping sores on her cheeks
and sunken, membrane-clouded eyes!
Clump-hop--she hobbled to the table on her cane,
cup in hand, teeth clenching a clay pipe,
both emitting fumes; smoke and steam
that wafted around her greasy locks,
and mingled with the flies.
He drew a quick breath, felt his heart pound,
pounding hard inside his chest,
as he looked the old hag up and down
and tried once more to forget
about her bony, gyrating hips,
gyrating circles and raping him
while she moaned and hissed
from the evil pleasure she forced out of him.
He tried to forget, shut tight his eyelids,
and was overcome by a fierce need to rest.