Welcome to the Yukon Trail

-Have you been eating at all? You’re, like, vanishing. P.S. you look like shit.
-I had almonds for breakfast today and, like, 10 cups of tea. And some raisins I found in my desk.
-Firstly, ew. Secondly, what the fuck. Like a fuckin fawn or some shit. Have a fuckin hamburger.
-… but I don’t eat meat.

This is how he expressed concern, punctuated with ‘fuck.’

And he was right, I do resemble a fawn.

Have you ever seen a deer up close? He saw a deer once so up close it had come through his windshield. It is true that he was drunk and true that it was foggy. It’s false he threw it in reverse to make sure it was dead. That’s what he meant when he said I looked like a fawn.

We had deer in the backyard every morning, I remember, eating the apples that fell to the ground, the bad ones that never rolled far from the tree. That was probably the last time I climbed a tree actually, against my grandmother’s stiff warning. I wish I could travel back now, to see myself sitting scabby-kneed in a tree,

“Who are you at the core?”
Seedy and fibrous, said the apple.

It takes a strong stomach to eat an entire apple, strong enough to break down the star-shaped cartilage, strong enough to keep the sprouted seeds from climbing up your throat. So Grandma says. Apples I can handle. Apples, when small, can be handled with myomectomies. Watermelons, on the other hand- well, that is something I might not ever be able to handle.

Besides, apples aren’t all bad. Ever make a star stamp? Cut the apple at its middle, dip it in that classroom paint that smells like crayon and voila! You are a divine creator well on your way to making a universe.

You are God (with a capital ‘g’).

Now that you’ve created the universe, you’ll want to mold some mortals a couple days later. This also is easily done, especially with all your divinity.

When I was in girl scouts, I carved my mother’s face in an apple. Its flesh was smooth and white and sweet. I left her on the picnic table when I was called in for dinner, but when I found her days later, she had aged into my Nana. Weathered and brown. Wrinkled. So I left her for dead, for squirrel food.

Apples taught me about growing old and about dying in the jaws of a fawn (car), or, if you’re lucky, the harshness of the seasons.

Welcome to the Yukon Trail.

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