GOT THE NUMBER 13 TATTOOED ON MY NECK

His feet buckled under pressure and life was suddenly swept into the undertow. He was trying to keep his head above water, but he could feel the umbilical cord wrapped around his throat like a vise.

Mother.
Ma.
Mom.
Mommy Dearest.
Mother fuck you.

It was hard to believe that for the second time in his life he had returned to the womb. It was cold inside and wet. The uteral walls were like the walls of a cell. He kept pounding at the walls demanding the warden release him.

“I’M DROWNING, YOU BITCH! I’m DROWNING!”

The umbilical cord tightened and he choked a little more.

In the back of his throat he was praying for death. His death, her death, it didn’t matter whose death.

Death.
Dying.
Decay.
Finality.
Rest.

He kicked the uteral walls again. His foot bounced back.

Bitch.
Cunt.
Whore.
Slut.
Harlot.
Mother.
Mother.
MOTHER.
M-O-T-H-E-R.

Were legs spread wide for victory or were legs spread wide for defeat? Were legs spread wide at all?

What penetrated all lower defenses, smashing through hymen and tissue creating and imprisioning him originally?

Where was daddy?
Where was mommy?
Where was god?
Where was the devil?
Where was heaven?
Where was he-

He stopped right there. The answer was quite obvious. He was in hell.

He was trapped in a caul and had to find his way out. Placenta was everywhere and his lungs filled with amniotic fluid. He’d try to scream but he’d swallow more and his lungs would burn in pain.

He could hear her singing.

“Rock-a-bye baby on the tree tops…”

It was cancerous (please kill me).

“When the wind blows the cradle will rock…”

He cringed (please kill me now).

“If the bow breaks the cradle will fall…”

He wanted to die (please, please for the love of God kill me).

“And down will come baby, cradle and all.”

He screamed.

Quite suddenly the memory of his second birthday came flooding back to him. It was his earliest memory. He remembered the cake, and the candles, and the cameras, and the singing adults, and all the terror he had felt.

He screamed that day, but instead they all laughed and said how someone had “had too much birthday”.

He screamed until they put him to bed for the night. Then he was at peace. He was alone. He was happy.

Quite suddenly he was in a very dark place.

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