Dear Grandmother Dear Grandmother, Grandmother, I am writing to ask you for the sapphire and emerald necklace that Grandfather gave you when he returned from the Yangse River. In a vision, a wolf came to me. He was wearing a crown made of sardine tin lids. He spoke to me, saying, "Sacrifice to me one thing that exists in a pair, but is not a twin, and I will not take your child from you." I know that your Biblical knowledge will support a decision to deny me what I ask for, Grandmother. But, you must know that this beast is as real as the type that presses these words in the paper you hold. I have seen him patrolling the grove of trees that lies just beyond the muscadine vines. He shows me his teeth and, Grandmother, they are as black as Caiaphas' heart. Grandmother, it is not enough to answer this spawn of evil's demand, I must go a step beyond and truly supply an offering so resplendent in jewels, that he will never ask anything of me again. They are going to take my right testicle and cover it with leather. It will be a patchwork sheath with dark stitching. An ancient from Peru will do the craftwork. I'm filming it all with the very heavy video-camera mother gave me the month before Darla was born. I'm excited about it. The thought of a weathered craftsman in a mountain top hut curing the leather in anticipation of the arrival of my testicle makes me feel so regal and kingly. I have considered having a village elder carry the testicle on a red velvet pillow, but I don't feel comfortable with the sexual implications that some of the less educated observers could imply. The testicle would be separated from me at that point. My saying that has no emotional effect. I won't miss it. Before I found the article about testicle upholstery in the back of a Smithsonian magazine I picked up in my dentist's office, I thought about driving it into the Albermale Sound with a three wood. I ran the whole scene through, each time using a new club. I'd place the testicle on the tee, then I'd hit it with the club. In my mind, I heard it whistle like a German shell flying over Belleau Wood. Then I imagined it softly rocking as it drifted to the bottom of the Sound. The three wood allowed me to stand closer to the tee than the driver. I have some difficulty with my vision now. I was glad that I found the article about the Peruvian craftsman though. The thought of some ordinary fish wandering to where my testicle lay and then ingesting it with no careful chewing upset me. If I have to remove my testicle, well that's necessary for my family's survival, but I can't reconcile some lowly beast in thatbrackish water using a part of me for it's meal. That, and the fact that the wolf told me to sacrifice my testicle and not send it to rest in some Pirate's grave helped me make my decision. I am becoming vulgar, I'm sorry. Oh, the need for the necklace that Grandfather gave you is this: I will dismantle it and adorn the testicle covering with each stone. Well, talk to you soon. Angela loved the breadmaker you sent at Christmas. We hope the card found you well. Apologies for it being sent so late, I still find it hard to believe stamps cannot be purchased anywhere in God's creation on Christmas Day. Well, dinner's ready and job hunting has really taken alot out of me today. See ya soon.