A former lover of mine once told me that I’ve never bared my soul to her and therefore, she could never take me seriously. She said that I’m too callous, too sarcastic, too insincere, too detached. She said that since I didn’t have any skin in the game, she didn’t know whether or not she could really trust me. I’ve heard that the best way to bare your soul is to flay yourself alive. To slowly strip the skin from your body, slice by slice, and reveal the pulsing muscle, bone, and blood beneath. Push your pound of flesh into the center of the table.
It’s only then that you will have nowhere to hide. Not even your hide will keep you safe. Bits of dust, dirt, and lint will stick to your newly slick surface. Hopefully, it won’t get infected. Your face is now a death mask, as bright white eyes and teeth stare out of wet, red meat. When you’ve skinned yourself alive, it’s best to move gingerly since even the slightest jostle can sting. I’d recommend wrapping yourself up in gauze when you’re not actively displaying your freshly bared soul. It’s not for just anybody, you know.
Eric Andrew Newman lives in Los Angeles and is from the Chicago area. He works as an archivist for a nonprofit foundation by day and as a writer of flash fiction by night. His work has appeared in Atlas and Alice, Ellipsis Zine, formercactus, Gargoyle, New Madrid, Pithead Chapel, and Quarter After Eight.