Your Spawn, Mona
Mona played chess with the computer, listened to death metal and ate quinoa. She’d eat soft food until the pain from her root canal stopped. She moved her black knight and the computer’s white queen checkmated her. “Arrhhhhhhhh!!” When Mona screamed there was a stabbing pain in her jaw. She winced and flung the quinoa bowl onto the floor, and herself behind it, writhing like a junky kicking smack. She cried in an intense implosion, not to allow her neighbors to hear this sad, desperate woman living alone breaking down in an act of humiliation and defeat. With tears and snot on her face, she crawled back to the computer and turned up the volume on ‘Fall into Decay’. The music was severe and celebrated decay, which she loved and could relate to.
Her pain lessened now and the internet station played one after another of the songs she liked, ‘Reality Distortion’, ‘Under the Rotted Flesh’, and ‘Nocturnal Dominion’. She saw humor in this kind of anti-music.
The cell phone vibrated on the sofa. “Who the hell’s this? I hate everybody!” It was her sister, the only one she could stand talking to when she was like this.
“Ma’s sad you’re not speaking to her.”
“I’ll go on ahead and email her some death metal songs for Mother’s Day, okay?”
“Ain’t no good, gon’ come to ya,” her sister said, and they laughed.
She didn’t think it would be mean to send her mother these songs. For all of the issues between them it baffled her to no end that her mother was one who understood her – this woman who had betrayed her on different levels. In the body of the email, she pasted links to the songs, ‘Seeds of Suffering’, ‘Thanks for Nothing’ and ‘Where Humanity is Cancer’, which had screams of agony and a great chaotic rhythm. Happy Mother’s Day! she wrote in the subject line. Above the links to the death metal songs she wrote: Dear Mom, these songs celebrate my existence and are a tribute to your being the channel to my glorious life. Who has five rows of teeth, bile colored toenails and squiggly hair? Your spawn, Mona.
She knew that her mother would listen to all of the songs. She hit send and called her mother two hours later.
“Yeah Happy Mother’s Day,” Mona said.
“Yeah you too bitch,” said her mother, as if possessed, her voice affected with darkness. Her mother’s usual was a lady-like manner and sweet voice. And she rarely cursed. The departure was exhilarating to Mona.
“What?” Mona laughed until gasping for air, coughing finally, wiping tears from her eyes. What her mother had said was even crazier because Mona had no children. She was caught off guard at these moments when her mother allowed herself to go with her brand of cynicism. She realized that this was one way of connecting with a daughter who had distanced herself by focusing on the wrongs inflicted on her throughout the years. Mona relished the sound of her mother’s demonic giggling through her own spasmodic laughter.