​There’s a cat in my mouth, I call her gloomxiety. Her body stretches down to my lungs, her tail is wrapped around them tight like they’re her life support. She robs me of my breath, a guaranteed slow death. Her claws are caught between the knots of my tongue. I taste blood and despair, murder and birth. 

Gloomxiety is terribly hungry. Trapped in the cavities of my teeth, she seeks her prey. Words. From mind to mouth, she traces their path. Plots destruction and hunts them down, one by one. Some are trapped in her whiskers, some perish at her claws. My mouth has become a battlefield for words. They fight for release, for a parted lip. A long  life in somebody’s memory. They fight and fail. My jaws cradle a ghost town. A graveyard of forgotten speech. I reek of blood and dictionary meanings.

Gloomxiety is growing in size, as the population around me grows less. She’s claimed me, body and soul. I’m a mere colony in her empire of stolen histories.Her tummy growls. I hear unspoken words howl. They float in her bile and screech.

Gloomxiety is about to explode. Her pot belly pokes my closed lips. Her green eyes hold the darkness of death. Her eyelids droop down in a demonic moan.Crack. crack. crack. An explosion of expletives, loving words and proper replies. Out. Out. Out. It’s a mad rush. A stampede of coherence. The cat is dead. I spit out her carcass. I breathe, I laugh. I’m about to celebrate, but something is wrong.

The meow of a motherless kitten, plotting revenge, reverberates in my throat. 

Uh oh. Cat got my tongue.


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