The Northville Review
an online literary journal
Inside Joke, Explained: It’s always been the same, same old story

Michael Pagan

There was once a 35-year old farmer in Southeast Asia who was killed by his beloved pet hippo, Strabo, when it dragged him into the nearby river and mauled him to death.

“Strabo is like a son to me–he’s just like a real person,” the farmer was heard saying to his baffled wife just before the incident. “There’s a relationship between Strabo and me, and that’s what some of you can’t seem to understand.”

The wife later died of dehydration, or drowning, or a combination thereof.

About the author

Michael Pagan is a recent graduate of Florida Atlantic University's Creative Writing M.F.A. program. His work has appeared in The Rumpus, as well as Bridle Path Press, and will soon appear in DIAGRAM, and the Eunoia Review.