• T. Mark Mangum

What's on My Mind


I woke this morning as a newborn. I heard every word spoken to me and from one adult to the other. I understood what they were saying. I knew about a crib, the TV, and the music being played. I was hungry I tried to ask for a burger, fries, and a coke, but my mother gave me the tit. Mothers milk as an infant, wow. Never tried it as an adult, so I can’t compare it to anything.

I listened to the news talking about war and inflation. I remembered who I was. James, I am James I said. but they smiled, called me Steven, and said, “Boy you sure are a talkative little fellow.”

I slept a lot, and diapers suck. When I slept, I had vivid dreams. James’ face, my face in the rearview mirror, the semi in front of me out of control, the other cars were crashing, and then darkness. I as the fully grown man I knew I was, James, followed the light. It was leading me somewhere. But I didn’t want to go. I stopped. There were other paths. The light was beckoning me, “come this way, my friend, and you will understand everything.”

I felt scared. I saw a dog running down one of the other paths, so I followed it. James loved, I love dogs. The path split I stopped. It sounded like a hospital, this path that the dog did not follow. Jane, James’ wife, my wife was a doctor. I went down that path.

Suddenly, I was swimming; I felt confined, all my senses muffled and unclear. What was happening to me? There appeared a tiny point of light that got bigger as if someone were unzipping a zipper. Hands, massive hands, I was being held by giants in hospital garb. I tried to tell them to put me down, they smiled and said, “Ah, it will be ok, you perfect little miracle boy.” As these hands washed, dried, clothed me, and whisked me away, I saw a woman dead on a gurney.

I cried; I was terrified because I couldn’t move. I fell asleep. When I woke, I realized I was the baby they called Steven the Miracle. It seems my mother, Steven’s mother, had died in a car accident. I was so confused. I don’t think this is how reincarnation is supposed to work. I mean, I really remember everything about James and his life. If I could move these punny little arms and hands, I could do some calculus for you. The nurse was a hotty, and I really wanted to go rock climbing.

The next few years are really going to suck, High school however is going to rock.


© 2021, T. Mark Mangum T. Mark Mangum, a product of the unimaginable worlds of Star Wars, Star Trek, Conan, and the Lord of the Rings. Lover and writer of fiction tales. He is a Veteran, a father of six, and a game enthusiast.


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