Stone Telling

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I Will Keep the Color of Your Eyes

When No Other in the World Remembers Your Name

by LaShawn M. Wanak

First, I'll start with the eyes. Not the color, but the shape. I'll curve them to match the arches of your feet. Not too steep or flat, just a gentle rise that hints at your playfulness. It was your eyes that made me notice you. That and the bacteria you bio-engineered to spell I love you.

Next, I'll dive through your arteries. Follow the flow of blood to the chambers of the heart. On its walls, I'll encode composure, tenderness, trust. I'll soften its tissues, temper its heat, but tame it completely? No, not so. I'll measure your passion solely in sequences and numbers. For I did love your passion, once, before it focused solely upon me.

I'll prune your neurons. The dirty looks you shot me when I spoke to other men, your demanding confrontations, our arguments — I'll snip those memories from your mind, mold them in Petri dishes like clay. Replace your accusations with gentle murmurs, the bruises on my arms with light kisses. I'll link chains of proteins together like intertwining fingers. Neuroimagine us as we should have been: happy, content.

I'll hack into your chromosomes. Descend upon your DNA. Reconfigure the building blocks that hid your nature from me. Slice into you as you sliced me. If I don't like what I see, I'll take you apart. Build you up from scratch, with no imperfections. No flaws.

I'll recreate you until you can protect me from yourself.
But I will keep the color of your eyes.

LaShawn M. Wanak lives in Wisconsin with her husband, son and inlaws. Luckily she can lock her office door. Her work has appeared in Ideomancer and Escape Pod, and is forthcoming in Dark Faith: Invocations. She is a graduate of Viable Paradise, and her short story, "She's All Light" was listed among the storySouth Million Writers Notable Stories of 2010.  Visit her at her blog The Café in the Woods.

Photography: adapted from Ice eye by Nicolò Paternoster.