Monday, January 23, 2017

THROAT BABY by Edward Morris

My girlfriend says I snore, and stop breathing sometimes. She keeps recommending I go do this Sleep Study, and I keep rescheduling. Sucks dating a paramedic. Can't hide nothin'.
She says it sounds like I was drowning. Or there's something trying to swim up out of me. I am hard to sleep with. The whole right side of my pillow is usually covered in drool when I wake up. Part of life, I thought, but that changes when someone else starts to live with you.

I spit in a spiderweb this morning, by accident, in the hedge out front. It wound around the web, down and through, glittering. It stayed. The spider moved. I saw later. But that part stayed.

I'm trying to quit smoking cigarettes. Too many other things fucking with me, and I know it's never going to get any easier. It's just time. It's time. I'll go do that study. I will. I'll see what is putting the a in my apnea. But not this week. I'm free next week.

Always next week.Each time I spit, I feel like it wants to go back down. Like it wants to swim back home. There'll be a string of it hanging out, when I just spit on the street, and I have to pull and pull and pull.It comes off. Nothing weird. It eventually comes off.

My Grandpa smoked cigars when he was middle-aged and had allergies all his life. And that otolarynologyst (so funny to hear the word in Papa's North Georgia accent,)why, “He done took so many of those polyps out of my sinuses, he said he could have made me a little brother.”

They weren't cancerous. That doc, and others, said our family was 'chromosomal,' which was a fancy way of saying, 'Probably inbred way back, and just all kinds of neurofibrowhatsis brewing in the wings.'

I have an ecig. I love it. Tastes like ice cream and Otter Pops. I'm almost used to it as the go-to habit, because I feel suffused with nicotine when I'm done smoking it proper,which is different than the way you smoke a regular cigarette. Just a matter of switching habits. Of learning to embrace new mutations. Learning to learn to.

More strings. More strings this afternoon. The last one was hell, and when it split,there was a little blood. Not painful hell, just awkward hell walking around looking like a dork trying to get it off. Like I was puking on the sidewalk. Some old Grandma gave me a wide berth and goes, “Shoo. He still feelin' it.”

It is painful to live in cities, now. Painful to look at everything you can never have, to choke and choke and nothing comes up. The whole way home, I couldn't look at myself in any shop-window glass. Not even the mirrored front of Nike. I hung my head. I didn't know why. I didn't need to see.

My boots had a new crack in each one, I saw when I got up on the doorstep. There was no more money. I gagged, like you do when you brush your tongue. Down in my throat, something gagged back. That part seemed natural. Like it was just time.

The house drowsed on into the quiet. It was a safe place, or it used to be. Nowhere felt safe now. I was sorry, to the house. Sorry for what might happen.

Rushing into the bathroom, I selected my instrument tray at random. A Popsicle stick. Two fingers. An ear-syringe left over from a baby cousin's visit. A sense of the random. Timing. Something--


Something makes sense, for the first time. The world is about to change. I open up and say Aah.

Ah. AHHHHHH. Everything, maelstrom, suction, the whirlwind. My jaw cracking farther, wider.The walls begin to crackle, bloop and bend. I... fall. I am...Pulled. Upward. Thrust. Toward the ceiling. Dreaming---

Dreaming free. Free. I follow the push, and swim. And swim to---




“Jesus Christ, what the hell is it?”

“I dunno, man. It was just floating there in the sink. What's your roommate's name...Charlie...Charlie sick?”

“Dunno.” A long pause. “Haven't seen him around.”

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