3
min

When women speak to me

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alexennes

44 readings

2

FINALIST
Jury Selection

I love it when women speak to me

kindly in languages I do not know. A silent dragonfly inhabiting the space between our faces, vibrating before

I pop the cork off of this whole damn picture show. I, of course, am a Stupid American and nothing but she she is something tangible. She stands erect statuesque unmoving unfettered even the hairs on her head typewriter tucked away and I am cramped crumbling. You see, there is someone in my lap and another at my elbow and if I don’t stand up and walk up and around sometime soon a clot could cobble itself into my calf. This in itself is not such a bad thing

until I stand up, the cabin clot shootflies up to my brain, and I become a story. I always say, I always explain, oh you know Those People Who Stand Up And Die when the plane lands? Yeah, that’s me. And suddenly I become aware of the tension I have been cradling and cooing

in my shoulders, in my back, but mostly in my gibberish jaw. When I was born, I was silent which of course was deeply disturbing to every adult within sightshot. They knew they should have been in earshot, and this is what disturbed them most and although I like to think that the world went

mute a moment after I entered it, the chaos was probably noisy. Quiet chaos is more chilling, so we say and scream and laugh and whisper to try and fill the void like when I was backseat queen, airfilling my favorite pasttime. Why is a refrigerator called a refrigerator? And now I haven’t said anything for four hours and thirty-four minutes, although I still have a ways to go and I still don’t know this woman’s tongue. My tongue feels too big for my mouth, and it always feels this way. Inflating. I am my tongue, and my tongue is a fist which feels tired

of punching up my teeth, my teeth which leave little fossils in that plushy pink. I wonder how large this woman’s tongue feels in her mouth. How large it might feel in mine. Every other part of me too, is inflating and expanding from its container. I have six zits bursting through this moment, which will soon mark me foreign in The Land of The Perfect. I used to have perfect skin. In fact, this was the most regular compliment I ever got because people don’t quite know what to do with the rest

of me. I had perfect skin because I was on birth control, and I wasn’t on birth control because of all the outrageous sex I wasn’t having. Five weeks ago I stopped taking birth control because a doctor with breath like cheddar told me to stop taking it. I thought I was going blind in my left eye that day and maybe one of The Clots had caused it. I asked my nurse friend who got upset with me because I Always Think I’m Fine And I Wait Until Things Have Turned Into A 911 Situation And I Call Her In A Panic And That Is Unfair, which I agreed with and apologized for

after I learned that I wasn’t going blind. Anyway, I was going blind so I went to go see the doctor after accidentally giving the receptionist an incorrect insurance card, which was actually a picture of my actual incorrect insurance card which I had left at home, and the doctor with the cheesebreath tapped my knee a couple of times with a hammer. Of course, I thought this was strange because knees don’t matter when you’re Going Blind. After making me chase his finger around

the room, cheddarman told me that I was having migraines with visual auras and that this was not great for someone on birth control because it increased my risk of stroke. Birth control also increased the risk of my cotton blood

clotting up and so my magpie mother decided enough was enough I was going off of birth control, but only after I had decided enough was enough I was going off of birth control. There are so many potential ways for me to die. I figured that if I could scrape one or two away I might as well, if nothing other than to make it easier on my poor mother. Something else will kill me later, something stealthier, something that in twenty-two

years from my death we will all nicotine know. And after these thoughts sprint suicides across my hardwood mind, the woman parts her lips and guts me with my mother tongue.

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