‘I Am What I Am’
(Winner of the ‘Jukebox Story’ flash fiction contest at North London Lit Fest, April 2014 )
I am what I am, I am my own special creation. First editing Nature’s mistype with the white-out of Mum’s make up. Then tonsorial experiments, sartorial over-elegance, a wiggle added to walk and talk that caught people’s breaths like burrs on a bush.
As the millennium burnt itself out and we tiny competitive stars strove to flare with light, cosmetics moved from powders and grease smears to the sharp-tongued touch of the medical and surgical, kissing my skin, my body opening up.
‘I admire your guts’ gasped a client, mouth inches away from them. ‘What imagination’, sighed another, atremble. Credit my clever accountants, I thought.
But the value of investments can go up as well as down. Past performance is not a guide to future performance. Gravity tugged. Cells collapsed.
So in came the implants.
I am now in the tiresome process of leaving physical form entirely. Each day, my plastic lungs exhale my voice into microphones while cameras capture, catch what they can. Lasers nib my profile.
All of these files will eventually corrupt, disintegrate. Bits and bytes of me’ll drift through the networks, bright plankton in black oceans. I’ll be everywhere. I can’t wait.