Written by Gabriella Troy
Art by Sora Shimazaki


this body is the one meant for me,
the one meant to encapsulate my soul
and bring me to the heavens,
the only thing I can call my own.

but I don’t like what fate has in store.
the stars aligned askew and
gave me skin that fits all wrong.
I don’t want to claim as mine
this body riddled with epigenetic scars.

I want to erase the past and
demolish the genes that give me bouts
of anxiety and sadness and exhaustion.
my brain is wired wrong, too high strung,
curled in the cold blanket of darkness and
hell-bent on destroying its home with hatred.
I can’t genetically engineer my way
out of self-loathing when my whole genome
is a disease, an incurable cancer attacking
until everything is deleted.

they’re unethical, designer babies,
and apparently perfection is overrated.
luckily for me, there are no perfect genes anyway;
they arise from the confusion of genomes
and the body’s love for mutations.
clearly, in the creation of this body,
my DNA shifted too far from normal.

at this age I’m done growing,
unless you count the hole under my feet.
but there’s a way out if I find it,
if I forget the enticing shortcut of science,
if I forget how I’ve narrowed my chances,
if I remember there’s a god of chances to worship.

it’s true that this is the one body I’ll have,
the body that will take me to the heavens
and claim its rightful place among the gods;
this body of mine, it embodies me
as a god of chance in disguise.

people change as they grow.
they make choices that restrict their composition
and express alien behavior,
make memories that stain their past and future
and gift children with a new mix of abilities.

if I recognize myself and my power
to edit the future, crispr has nothing
on my ability to expel unwanteds
from this body of mine.