Tract (The XX Chromosome)

The chubby X inside hates to bleed, the skinny one loves it. She gets an A-line haircut, sleeps 8-15 minutes in a tanning bed, buys a pair of tight-leg tapered jeans, smokes a cigarette, and cries on the phone to her girlfriend about her mother and her sex life—although she doesn’t mention her sex life; that’s for the chubby X.

Together, they learn about the Victorian notion of the inverted penis (all women were believed to have them). There is no way we are so inside in, they think, so perma-fucked, but what of those times we feel nothing, no matter how fast we move our own hands?

Holly Simonsen’s other work appears in Ecotone, Copper-Nickel, and Red Rock Review. She is currently enrolled in the MFA program at Vermont College of Fine Arts.