The day the date the specific now is gone. The words in my mouth dissolve as a bucket of liquid anxiety drenches my upper body, primed for travel across tissue and organs, dripping leaking seeping from my ribcage onto my intestines. It slowly passes. When it does, I want to throw up in hopes the colors—glowing gradations, oscillating shades of pink that flicker red and glow pink again as the almostnausea fades—vacate the pit of my empty stomach. In a sweeping, crowning motion, an electrical current spreads from my scalp to my eyebrows. It makes me reach out for something to hold onto. Bracing myself, I close my eyes a moment. I can hear my heart beating. I can taste my heart in the back of my throat. Struggling like a baby bird fallen from its nest. Writhing in the cupped hands of a stranger. When I open my eyes again I see the outline of my feet under a hospital blanket. I see my wife, asleep in a chair, across the room. I look out the window and see a blue jay watching me, its feathers brushing the glass.


Neurodivergent Seattle writer Jason M. Thornberry’s work appears in Route 7 Review, The Stranger, Adirondack Review, Hash Journal, Entropy, and elsewhere. His work examines disability, family, and social justice. An MFA candidate at Chapman University, Jason taught creative writing at Seattle Pacific University. He reads poetry for TAB Journal.

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