My mother said later you were wanted — she told me the story of the silver Jetta, its rolling into a ditch, its tin‐foil crumpling. At twenty I drove a silver Honda. The only times I prayed, I asked that it would swerve senselessly and catapult me into some uncertain dark.
They took her to a hospital after and searched for a heartbeat, my heartbeat. They couldn’t find it. And then they did. and years after I tired of the same pulse, its unrelentingness.
In the baby picture I remember, my mother is still on the operating table and I am screaming and smeared red. She said my crown of bruises dissipated in hours. When I swam in the crowdless pool in waning summer, I flattened myself to the bottom until my legs went weak. I always pushed upward in the end, clear membrane of water breaking over my upturned face before the reluctant inhale