Take it all back to the bone, pare away the flesh and the skin sack encasing it, take away the soft yellow fat, in thick sheets of useless decadence, the soft squishy organs, throw them too, just tie them in a black plastic sack, a small mortician delicacy. Take all of it, stuff me full of straw and cotton wool, sew me up and set me out upon a chair, gutted, and I would look no different. I would smile and laugh, polite and deferent, raise the glass to my mouth, party trick water down into the dry straw and cotton, a masquerade, a facsimile of a human being, a shell that says all the right things at all the correct times, at the right loudness and strength, hand back down, set the glass without spilling a drop, almost human, almost sensitive to glass and liquid, almost carelessly practiced. Almost.
A pale imitation of living, one that reassures that everything is fine, everything is ok, everything is as it should be at all times present and correct. Not needing, not wanting, not jones-ing not anything except what is expected and required.
Not scared, not angry, not striving or not not daring to hope. Corrected and not putting a foot wrong, all opinions carefully curated, nothing x rated. Sexless and smiling, stiff and never crying.
And one day I will snap and walk out the door, the final straw broken, and I will sit by the wharf and smoke out the rats, and find a way to not care so fucking much any more about things I can do absolutely nothing worth anything about. Yes, sit alone on the shore and drift into something other than a straw-woman, stuffed with cotton and chaff, spilling her dusty innards in a trail down this street and that, offending the birds and scaring the wildlife.