The Testing by Sandra Seamans

by Barb Goffman


From Cold Rifts, a collection of stories by Sandra Seamans (Snubnose Press, 2012).

This is the most  unusual story in this collection so far. (I’m reading the stories in order.) A teenage girl (Sandra writes about a lot of teenage girls, as do I, which is perhaps why I notice it. Anyway …) A teenage girl had a baby with the preacher of a sect that worships (?) or perhaps just uses snakes in their religion. The reverend uses them while he preaches, at any rate. The sexist (that’s a nice word for him) preacher declares that this whore with whom he had a baby must have her faith tested by putting her and the baby into a box with a snake to see if it kills them. And THEN the story gets weird.