When Will My Rapist’s Closet Be Cleaned?

by | Oct 17, 2020 | Dean Cleaning One | 8 comments

“Hysteria comes from the Greek root hystera, meaning ‘uterus’. Originally, it was believed that hysteria and hysterical symptoms were caused by a defect in the womb, and thus, only women could become hysterical.” –Shalome Sine

Vivid and startled, blood spits out a song, a sigh, signals a stale rustle of corruption. A pulse rouses itself from the uterus. And those subterranean tubes palpate the last fumes of incessant weather before swirling the rays of dusk down the toilet. I am a girl of fugitive parts. Cut with a straight knife. Glue fists the slit where loot, diced and unkempt, is hacked out bit by bit.

Welcome to the trail guide for hysterectomy. I am a girl. My inner wilderness is co-habitating with feral beasts. They attach to my uterus. My surgery is a uterectomy. There is no hysteria to remove.

Predarectomies: removal of the predator. It’s a goopy, ugly, long procedure. No one visits and flowers do not arrive. There’s so much to remove.

8 Comments

  1. Trent

    Meg –

    As always, some flourishes with words, that are inimitable~

    The one that rings in my ears: “Welcome to the trail guide…”

    Wish I would have thought of “flowers don’t arrive” –

    • Paul Beckman

      Meg-My first thought was that I was eavesdropping on the “secret women” club.
      Some of my favorite lines: “Vivid and startled, blood spits out a song, a sigh, signals a stale rustle of corruption. A pulse rouses itself from the uterus.”
      “I am a girl of fugitive parts.’ “.Welcome to the trail guide for hysterectomy.”
      All so good.

  2. Chelsea Stickle

    “I am a girl of fugitive parts.” What a great line! I want it tattooed on a rib or hung on a wall. Your title, too, is attention grabbing, and yeah, I’d like to know that, too.

    This part, too: “Predarectomies: removal of the predator. It’s a goopy, ugly, long procedure. No one visits and flowers do not arrive. There’s so much to remove.” There are some people I’d like to remove.

  3. Roberta Beary

    I love these two paragraphs. Their clean, stark phrases convey a new level of emotional resonance. A story within a story within a story. Well done!

    “Welcome to the trail guide for hysterectomy. I am a girl. My inner wilderness is co-habitating with feral beasts. They attach to my uterus. My surgery is a uterectomy. There is no hysteria to remove.

    Predarectomies: removal of the predator. It’s a goopy, ugly, long procedure. No one visits and flowers do not arrive. There’s so much to remove.”

  4. Clementine Burnley

    Wow Meg, stunning. I love and mourn the truths of this.

    The same phrases jump at me: a girl of fugitive parts, feral beasts, Predarectomies,

    Do you know the quotation:
    “No, I do not weep at the world—I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife.” –Zora Neale Hurston

    https://poetrysociety.org/features/in-their-own-words/eve-l-ewing-on-what-i-mean-when-i-say-im-sharpening-my-oyster-knife

    I mean
    when I see something dull and uneven,
    barnacled and ruined,
    I know how to get to its iridescent everything.
    I mean I eat them alive.
    what I mean is I’ll eat you alive,
    slipping the blade in sideways, cutting
    nothing because the space was always there.

    Eve Ewing

  5. Tommy Dean

    Wow, stunning as always, Meg! What a completely new way to have written this! The filtering is just perfect from this perspective!

    “Vivid and startled, blood spits out a song, a sigh, signals a stale rustle of corruption.” I love the ways the verbs create imagery here, the active, you can’t look away from this moment urgency here!

    “I am a girl of fugitive parts.” You’ve created an entire character just in this line!

    “No one visits and flowers do not arrive. There’s so much to remove.” And here is the shift that gives us our story! Just fantastic writing!

  6. Kella

    Meg, I firmly believe poets make the best creative nonfiction writers. Wow.
    As many have already told you, these lines in particular kill the reader (like killing in a good way, to be sure): “I am a girl of fugitive parts. Cut with a straight knife. Glue fists the slit where loot, diced and unkempt, is hacked out bit by bit.” I love Tommy’s note on characterization too because the “girl of fugitive parts” is absolutely a compelling, breathtaking character/persona.
    I love short pieces about women’s bodies and our inner “mysteries.” They allow us to reclaim what was always ours.
    I also love the surprising ending, of wondering why don’t we have “predarectomies.” And those last two concluding lines, swoon: “No one visits and flowers do not arrive. There’s so much to remove.”

  7. Christina Rosso-Schneider

    I am currently doing research on the connection between female hysteria and witchcraft, so this piece really spoke to me. I am in awe of the impact you’re able to have in just a few short paragraphs. The definition at the beginning was perfect and there are just so many powerful, beautifully written lines.

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