All tagged identity

Candy Mouths Are Made of Wax

“Tell me something nobody else knows about you,” he says, sitting across from you at the romantic table. In most settings, he looks like a boy, but sometimes he looks like a man, or a cat, or a telephone pole. He looks past your left ear when he speaks, like your eyes are the production assistant’s camera, like your eyes are the burning loins red foxglove on the mantel.

Protective Instinct

Arundhati moves across the country, east to west, after the Lyme. There aren’t any deer in California, someone buying pears tells her in the grocery store, and she passes that on to her teenage daughter and husband. She adds, I just want to be somewhere safe, and with how she survived for them, fought that infection once-nestled in her brain, who are they to argue?

At the End of Osama bin Laden

Jaime and I started breaking up over coffee on a cold, spring morning.

He’d been unemployed since the previous year and over the last few months I had been paying for most things—his Metrocard, our lingering brunches in Williamsburg, the entrance to museums; little luxuries like tickets to see Chromeo perform a sold-out show at Terminal 5.

True Stories Never Satisfy

A woman broke up with her boyfriend. Then she went on a few dates using a popular website but nothing worked out. Her parents encouraged her to get out of the city, spend a weekend at the family cabin upstate even though it was out of season.

6 Things That Suddenly Matter

The dryer emits a shrill, rodent-style squeak that precedes a period of silence. The sound resembles the screech of a child before refusing to speak without intervention by specialists. Because the dryer is unlike our son, who requires a regimen of speech therapy in order to be appreciated by fellow mammals, I think we should stop paying pros and purchase a new one.

Shark Bites

My friend Jenny calls my scars “shark bites.” She says that’s what her trans friends call their scars. I had never heard that before, but I imagine the story I might tell: I was taking a surfing lesson because that’s what everyone does when they move to California. I paddled out beyond the break and I was waiting to catch a wave when, out of nowhere, this great white shark pops up and goes right for my tits. Chomp. Chomp. Like that, my breast tissue became chum, and that’s how I got these shark bites.

knitting instructions for war work

I went through puberty twice. Late each time, each time assisted by medically prescribed hormones of various quantities and various kinds. Just as my doctors were finally satisfied that my voice was low enough, we set upon the task of raising it again. And again, like the first time, I found myself unwillingly, unpleasantly subjected to the endocrinal whims of the teenaged body.

And Then I Cursed This Motherfucker

This Motherfucker, he turned his face toward me, with his slightly receding hairline and his upper-lip sweat, and he sneered at me. His face melted from well-to-do into feral beast. “Listen lady,” he said, “I have as much right—”

“They’re not a lady,” my daughter interrupted.