by Stephanie Parent
Do you remember when you were just a blinking ball of light? Before you began to resemble a dead movie star before you dangled from young girls' ears, and on chains beside their hearts before a hotel heiress named her chihuahua after you. My friend Gina from the hospital who was raped twice, once by her father and once by strangers, who made crystal meth and anorexia her neverland — never bleed, never grow breasts — is getting a tattoo of you. Someday, I might too. Do you remember when J.M. knew you couldn't bring back brothers who stayed thirteen forever couldn't stop Peter's mother from coughing but he made you anyway? How does that make you feel? Do you remember when girls read about you and thought maybe they could find just the right lost boy? (older, they know they'll never find him, but that does not mean that he does not exist) I picture the lights shining out the windows at the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children and I see you.
Stephanie Parent lives in Hollywood, California, only a block from Marilyn Monroe's hand prints at Grauman's Chinese Theater, but she currently spends more time at home with her computer than mingling with celebrities. Luckily, she has her two adorable dogs, a chihuahua named Chin-Mae and a maltipoo named Sasha, to keep her company, and she'd choose them over a gaggle of Hollywood stars any day. Stephanie is a professional copy editor for companies including Dorchester Publishing, Cobblestone Press, and The Wild Rose Press, and her short fiction has been published in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet and MARGIN: The Online Journal of Magical Realism. Her favourite fruit is the mango.
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