“The Pain-Body” By: Kirby Wright

for Eckhart Tolle

 I flop in bed, placing a fiver over my heart. I want to lure the pain-body to the surface to see what’s shaping my thoughts. I’m guessing it resembles a pulsating blob of tar. I can’t get angry waiting. I must remain in a trance to draw the creature out. I forget childhood beatings. I ignore my divorce. The future? Meaningless.

My bowels pop. There’s a stabbing in my tailbone and a tug at the penis. Something claws from spine to liver and swings the rib cage. I feel teeth gnawing through my heart. I hide the bill under a pillow. A phantom with a platinum bouffant and red lipstick erupts from my chest, teeth flashing gold. “Gimme that money,” demands Mummy, who died a year ago last June.

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