Rachel Kendall
        Deep inside the stomach... No, further down, below, to the very pit where the flesh swells a little in a rounded mass and the skin is softer, less taut.  Here, where it can be grabbed between thumb and finger to roll it or stretch it.  It stretches like this for a reason of course.  A fleshy baby-making reason.  But she isn't born for this so she doesn't need the apparatus. Might as well chisel them out sideways.  Mostly there is just a churning down there, down near the fine whiskers.  It's where her anger begins (has she been reading too much Lawrence?) with a pulse before it rises to the throat.  It's where the giddiness is born at the sight of him, and later him and every other him.  Pretty flicking rickety spinning spiders making dirty webs sore with the craving. It is purely emotion.  The stomach tells of hunger, the throat of thirst, the skin of heat, the heart of...nothing. Except fear perhaps.  Love lies in the pit, along with hate and sadness and sometimes joy.  All the debris floating around in the darkest dark.  But mostly it just churns.
        She is thirsty but water does not solve it.  Milk turns to cream and whisky lets loose the loneliness. It's a darker juice she craves  Something thick like treacle that might coagulate like blood.  So she steps into the shed where the mice snigger, and grabbing the can of motor oil, she tips it to her lips and drinks.  Hoping it will stop the gritty churning.  She sits on the wooden floor and waits for quiet, in the brown dirt and the sharp silver prongs of the gardening tools that lean heavily against the back wall.  Her hands sweep over wood and splinters, and splinters and splinters itching, which squeeze themselves into the soft pads of her fingers like burrowing insects.

        She doesn't have long to wait before the things inside of her begin to change their path, the churning reduced to a brick-upon-brick smoothness or the teeth of cogs catching in the teeth of other cogs.  She feels the buzz and hum of the machine.  The bulk of it presses against her lower back, leaving a dent, and she doesn't know whether to hunch over or sit on the floor with legs bent and scabby knees pointing to opposite walls. Sick, weighty, it pulls and tugs at her until suddenly her body lurches forwards and she plunges into a kind of black oblivion and the contents of her stomach pool from her stretched lips and onto the floor in a sticky brown splash of bile and the clank of nuts and bolts, springs, screws, nails, blades that scratch at her throat. Sore, spent, relieved, she gathers up the pieces (stringy with saliva) in her hands and begins to jigsaw them together into some kind of form that resembles a baby. An adorable little thing with a knife blade grin, a handle in its back and bulbs for eyes that light up when it's hungry.
The Seedy Underbelly