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Terence Rissetto
New Zealand

Moka's Utu - Penny Howard
Terence Rissetto was bred and buttered in Mangere before the butcher went
The Colour Purple

I couldn’t find any socks
Try the basket at the end of the bed,
My wife, 45, offered over the phone.
I had a Urologist appointment that afternoon.
My father, 82, took me to the clinic counter.
Fill this form in, the receptionist, 54, told me.
I’m blind, I said.
She looked at me. Use this black pen then.
I heard my name called
And went in the direction of the voice.
Excuse me, I called.
A woman appeared in front of me, aged about 105.
Follow me, she said
And scooted off on an imaginary motorised scooter.
Excuse me, I yelled, making the walls cower.
She appeared in front of me again.
I’m blind, I said.
Please f o l l o w  m e, she said
In exaggerated imaginary slow motion,
Leading me up a corridor into a darkened room.
We need to test your flow rate, she said,
Indicating a bowl in the middle of the room.
I’m blind, I said.
It’s okay, I’ll help him, my father said.
And who are you? A friend of his?
No, I’m his father.
Oh.  She looked at him dubiously.
After I finished, she led us into the Urologist, 36.
I’m blind, I said pre-emptively.
I’m sorry, he said.
It’s not your fault, I said, at least, I don’t think it is.
No, it’s been a long time since I’ve made boys blind, he said.
I told him I had waterworks and erection problems.
He looked down at my socks.
Don’t worry sir, he said to my father,
We’ll have him up and running in no time.
When we got home, my daughter, 22,  hugged me.
Dad, tell me why you’ve got my pink socks on?


Drinking cocktails of some sort or another,
flattered by his attention, despite her mother’s warnings,
and once drunk, using a screwdriver to help him 
unlock her mother’s car
and violate its reluctant ignition.
He seemed assured, in control, dangerous.
At school, he had always ignored her.
Now he rubbed her inner thighs as he drove.
This must be love, she thought.

Later, more drinks, A few stolen kisses
in the familiar backseat of her mother’s car,
her little sister’s car seat
and soft toys thrown out onto the cold feet of the desserted McDonald’s carpark.
When she objected to his demands,
he used the screwdriver to unlock the gold of her arches
and ram his own screwdriver in again and again.
This must be love, she thought.
She didn’t bleed as much as she felt she would.
There was no point telling him.

He drove out of the carpark like a demon at le mons,
Finally Screeching to a halt on arrival
At a rival’s house.
What are we doing here?  She asked.
It’s my fiancee’s.  I live here. We’re having a baby.
But what about me?  Us?
Don’t worry. I’ll tell the boys I’ve broken you in.
They’ll all want a piece,
Sluts like you are always in demand.
He handed her the screwdriver, pointy end first.
Something to remember me by, he said.
The screwdriver  made her think  of the groove in the head of
the penis he’d tried to force into her mouth moments before.
Hamburgers  would never taste the same again.
This must be love, she thought.

She plunged the screwdriver hard into his left eye,
twisting, searching for the groove that could
turn everything back to how it had been.
He screamed and fell to the ground
Twitching like the car’s engine trying to
Fire itself back into life.
He didn’t bleed as much as she thought he would.
There was no point telling him.
She decided to drive back to the carpark
And retrieve her little sister’s discarded car seat and toys
before someone tried to steal them.