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From the inside out, these are my layers: bad, good, bad, good, and now--new--again bad. They attach beneath my skin, nested one inside the other like Matruschka dolls, anchored with a pin through each skull at the top. They ring like a bell, scream and peal, complain, when layers and outsides clash. Beneath the layers, there is nothing: unbounded emptiness like the equation of the universe inverted so that one equals zero.
I was born with just bad, in New York City in August, a twin, half dead, half orphaned. My mother told me the story once, in the hospital, how