Mayhem Literary Journal is proudly sponsored by Te Whare Wananga o Waikato, The University of Waikato
issue 5

october 2017

issue 5 - october 2017

Doris - Emily Campbell

(if you’re reading this    i hope i’m fucking dead)

in my mother’s nightmares                    i am the skin-walker

          spider-eyed in the summer

                        fertilizing girls in the

                                                  mosquito heat

          ovaries split into pomegranate   seeds spilling free &

                        bug-eaten through his                slit fists

          a woman’s quiet terror  in three hundred sixty degrees

burrowed deep into the bloodline

          a childhood kingdom    submerges

                        mermaids drowning      in the afterbirth

          formaldehyde skies       hemorrhage wet memory meat

          i am afraid of something            we cannot accuse

if the mother is survivor’s guilt    formed flesh

          then what is the child

          horror

                        a child is horror

Holzer Diagnostic - Emily Campbell

Circle your answer from one to five: one being completely false, five being completely true.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] Better to die young than live-forever.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] This hole has existed long before you; you were born oozing around the sides of it.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] It’s not easy being a woman in outer space.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] Teachers warned you not to smile with too many teeth. 

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] Sometimes, you find yourself leaking from surprising places.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] You’ve been unnecessarily preoccupied with kidnappings.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] Near the point of climax, it’s fun to image Venus bursting through the ceiling to stain the mattress with you.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] You can see your face in other people’s knees.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] A better man would know what to do with his hands at all times.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] You believe it’d be quite pleasurable to have your skull rearranged.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] It is important to learn other languages so you can explain your traumas to strangers in foreign lands.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] You’d have made a much prettier boy.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] In a perfect world, all genitalia would be as hairless and smoothed shut as a Barbie Doll’s.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] You’d look good with surgery scars. 

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] You identify with photographs of insects with holes on both ends.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] God is the ultimate absent Mother. 

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] You’re afraid of horses. Their eyes are so heavy, and you don’t know that they like what they see.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] Late at night, you turn your tongue sideways to simulate feelings of intrusion.

[1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5] If something dies quiet, it never should have been alive in the first place.

Calculate your Score: __

Contributor's Note

Emily grew up all over the Pacific, and can't quite remember how she got here.

 

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