I awoke to the shaky, bad-gut feeling of my days with gluten: each stretch of intestine its own serpent, stick-poked and salivating and wanting out. Slamming behind my left eyesocket was the quickened tattoo of my blood: dah-duh-tump, dah-duh-tump. “I feel sick” doesn’t cover it on these days, that tepid stain of a phrase. Sick feels me, pinches my larynx, bends back my elbows, kicks my shins. Sick is the subject and I its weakened, palpated object.
This is why I must remain humble: just when I think I have beaten it, fooled it, run around the block on it and sneaked into its end-zone, I do the classic horror-film turn and it is closer than ever, my cute little ailment, my snack of a disease. I scream; it gapes its maw. I stumble backwards to flee; it prowls forward in no hurry.
Names have power, but this one is a mouthful of chalk. I found it and called it what I thought it was and hit it with a sword turned to foam. Today is one long Möbius twist of the guts.