I’ve reached the age of sixteen without menstruation. My meat has been kept bound and tendered like lamb like veal like whatever else is also good to eat. There is no other way I could have grown to this shape. There is no other way I would have been served: grilled and without liniment for my burns.
I still feel the bite of the string tied around my ankles when they raised me foie gras. I have a phantom tube down my throat: forever gagging. If they would have done away with me in my youth, there’d still be something left of me to enjoy.
Other pains are absent. My breasts never sored or swole. I pinch the flesh beneath my chest and try to roll it upwards, but it falls back to its home atop my ribs. And to this, I am head to knees, all screams.
I come from a room without doors or windows. A cage of plaster. How they came and went, I don’t know. The light never changed. The air was always still. When I was found, brined and gleaming, I felt them far off stirring.
Virgin assimilation: the way a mother stews a daughter in her own image. The womb as unrelenting as the one it sprouts from. Not me. I like me tender and chewy. Chewable. I like me sprawled out and limp. For butchery or stuffing.
I think of slow lickings. Hours. What did you just say? But I’ve become lazy. Incapable even. Around a room how many can tell? I come to, wondering if I’ve contorted myself in the position I’m thinking. I imagine myself peach, only the meat is blander and skin more soft.
After all, it is the blooming age. Ripe and furless, I am appetite. I’ll miss my taut.
Katy Mongeau lives in Providence, RI where she is an MFA candidate in Literary Arts at Brown University. She is assistant editor at Caketrain, a journal and press.