Madonna and Child with Butter Cow | Zachary Kocanda
with a line from Wikipedia
When I say “Hillshire,” you say, “Farms,” then pull me in closer with your hooves. Spoon me like forgotten low-fat yogurt in the back of the refrigerator and kiss me goodbye before you leave for work. The most sensitive part of a cow is its udders, and the most sensitive part of you is me. But don’t worry. I’m fine. Take your time in the fields. I fear for the tipped cow, but you reassure me—: A healthy cow lying on her side is not immobilized; she can rise whenever she chooses. I follow the goings-on of the state fair, forlorn I can’t join you. The sculpted butter cow is the belle of the ball, like every year. I preferred last year’s design, but I’ll still protect her with my life. I take a twelve-hour shift and monitor the webcam to make sure she’s safe. The exhibit closes soon. I wait for you. A mother and child, alone, behold the spinning cow behind its bulletproof glass. It must be baby’s first state fair—so tiny, a pink bow in her hair, black and white polka dot onesie, little calf. The mother whispers to the infant: “You too are more than toast fodder, baby.” The child fusses. I see them stir before the sculpture has completed its rotation, and I white-knuckle my computer mouse. Hold it, I will to them, You must see this beauty from all sides.
About the Author:
Zachary Kocanda’s writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Joyland, Grist, Hobart, and Vol. 1 Brooklyn, among other publications. He lives in Chicago, Illinois. Find more at zacharykocanda.com.