– I peel myself clean; thumb splitting porous skin;
Brittle nail breaking vein.
– I tug at the small white strings and imagine them
Exposed nerves, grateful for my touch
Despite the pain.
– I pull vulvic lips of flesh
Like petals plucked in times of doubt
That only reveal themselves once the body has been split in two.
– I suckle on a segment and remember what it is to taste
Any flavour other than metallic;
To fill my mouth with something other than an idle tongue.
– I drop a pip into the ditch at my eroded teeth, bury it there
So that it might take root in my cushioned gums
– And I recall my mum’s warning about swallowing seeds,
But figure that there are fates worse than becoming a tree.
Tyler Turner is a writer and rat mom based in Sheffield, UK. Recently, she graduated from university with a BA in English and History and is to start studying for a MA in Creative Writing. In 2017, she was short-listed for the Wicked Young Writer Award.