One of Those Days by Molly Thornton

The itch begins on my first right toe
And scrambles up my leg
And I’m sorry for whatever I’ve done

Thick scales replace skin
And I scratch furiously at what was my foot
Now green-gold and clawed

I hope again for salvation
But the change, it does not cease
Chain-link petals run up my thighs

Where once a girl I was
I turn
In the unlikeliest of places

Scanning People from the grocery magazine stand
Eyeing my still pink hands

My loose carrots and their leafy tops
Roll down the black mechanical belt
Cans and jars ride behind them

By the time the cashier asks for my ID
I’ll be unable to prove
Who I was

I react to a surge at the base of my spine
Like a cart was crashed into me
I turn around to give side eye
But there’s no one there

Instead, a tail grows fast and protrudes
Into the aisle

In my last moment of human thought
I remove my glasses
and brace for the screams

God this is embarrassing.

 

Molly Thornton is a queer, LA-based multi-genre writer. Her hybrid, prose poetry manuscript Proof of You was long listed by the 2020 [PANK] and Dzanc Books’ contests. Her poetry and creative nonfiction have been published in The Los Angeles Times, They Said anthology, Hippocampus Mag, Lavender Review, and more, and also has poetry forthcoming in Peach Magazine. She is a Lambda Literary Fellow and WeHo Pride Poet.

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