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EP213: A Monkey Will Never Get Rid of Its Black Hands

By Rachel Swirsky.
Read by Alasdair Stuart.
All stories by Rachel Swirsky
All stories read by Alasdair Stuart

Papa and Uncle Fomba told me if I didn’t join the army, they’d kill me. They didn’t. They cut off my hands.

This was after U.S. forces marched on Syria, but before we invaded Lebanon. On every city block, posters of Uncle Sam entreated every Tom, Duc, and Haroun to get blown up in the name of freedom. Papa and Fomba gave me two weeks to enlist. I ran for Canada instead. They caught me.

Rated R for amputation fads.

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  1. [...] Mandolin’s short story “A Monkey Will Never Be Rid Of It’s Black Hands,” previously mentioned on “Alas” when it was honored by storySouth, has now been podcasted by Escape Pod. [...]

  2. [...] ‘The Monkey Will Never Get Rid Of Its Black Hands’ by Rachel Swirsky followed it, which I also narrated. This, to my mind, is one of the best stories we’ve ever run, a fascinating, troubling combination of alternate history, seething fury and vast human tragedy. [...]