The Boiler

Cade Leebron

BARCELONA, 2008

We went to KFC because it was closer than BK
and it wasn’t that we were lazy, it was that there were all
these demonstrators in our way, chanting death to Israel
and burning torahs. And it’s not that I find that book especially
holy but Toby from Texas said cover your hair, my Jewish-
looking hair, so that I wouldn’t be identified as one of those
people to bring death to. I got fries instead. We watched
the burning from the second story of the Kentucky Fried
Chicken off Placa Catalunya and I thought first that this wasn’t
what I had expected of Europe, free world, old world.
But it was exactly what I knew then, at 16, to expect of Europe,
death for girls with dark curly hair, burnt hair, that gas chamber
kind of hair. There’s a market for Holocaust
fiction and it might all be Jewish pre-teens in America.
There’s a market for white meat, for buckets and buckets
of muscle but I’m more interested in what is left
behind, the fat that must coat the floors of those chicken
places, those little slaughter houses that I’ve never
hair-netted myself into.

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Cade Leebron is earning her MFA in nonfiction at The Ohio State University, where she serves as associate nonfiction editor at The Journal. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Brevity, Yemassee Journal, Inside Higher Ed, Midway Journal, HYSTERIA, The James Franco Review, and The Manifest-Station. She can be found online at http://www.mslifeisbestlife.com or on Twitter @cadeyladey