Shivani Mehta

“Origin Story”

My mother told me I was born out of the sky, dropped from somewhere beyond the moon’s shadow. She found me coiled on a crop of weeds, brushed the dirt from my body, shook worms from my hair. My mother told me I came from the sea, washed up on shore with fragments of coral, jellyfish, my body swaddled in seaweed. She heard my cry in the tide’s restlessness. My mother told me I was born from the seed of a pistachio nut. She planted it in the garden and waited. Once a day she squeezed my body, testing for ripeness. When I grew to the size of an avocado she plucked me from the branches, peeled the leaves from my skin like an orange. When I tell this to people I say it’s a bedtime story, it’s safer that way, with no princess, no castle, just a hunchback kissing the lips of a wide-eyed horse until they both run out of breath.

via Hayden’s Ferry Review:

Prompt: What’s your origin story? Keep it surreal, dream-like. Did you fall from the sky or sprout out of the ground? What’s your fireside myth? How does it unravel? Run for as long as you can, catching us up to modern times, or keeping your origin story in the past tense. Run until you can’t. Then crawl for a few more lines. If you also wrote something for the “about the author” prompt, you can put these two paragraphs next to each other and see how they interact and converse.