Grey Matter by Irenosen Akharele



I have always wondered what it would be like to eat my brain. Not in a suicidal way or a scientific way, its more a thing of idle fascination. 


I imagine it will be a rainy day and I will be dressed in pink, craving something warm. My thing of interest is my ss2 biology notebook with the pages filled in ugly, barely legible chicken scratches with interesting information about how all my big feelings come from my amygdala. What a weird name right?

As I read on; my cravings become stronger, I am suddenly hyper aware of my absurdly dry tongue . I will try with water or some of the warm soda on my table but they just slosh around in my mouth and travel to my stomach, providing no relief. 

Then I hear it, the thunder that calls me fat. I am hungry, despite having two breakfasts less than thirty minutes apart from each other an hour ago. I will try to ignore the way my intestines twist around each other in protest, calling, begging me to satisfy my very specific craving. 


Lightning will blind my vision momentarily but the clap of thunder will awake something in me. Something fresh, something raw and frankly a little scary but when am I not scared? It moves me, first my feet, then my hands, then I start to wander through the house, legs weaving through the familiar darkness of my hallway, meeting the occasional wall and the side of a shoe rack but I will find my way to the kitchen. 

Lightning creates a dramatic backdrop so I stare and appreciate it, but not before I fill up a pot with water and put it to boil. My kitchen is a mess and all of the food i cooked the day before yesterday has gone bad but it doesn’t matter because i live alone. Nothing matters because I live alone. 


I will watch the rain for a few more minutes until my mind is empty and walk out to get a hammer. 


I imagine it will be easy, breaking my head open and pouring the contents into the almost boiling water, watching the almost-white-but-not-quite matter start to separate from its brain shape. My mouth will water even though I cannot smell anything because all my senses are in a pot, getting ready to be ingested. 


I like to think that my meal will be ready before my heart realizes no one is telling it what to do anymore so i will do the last thing i thought about before placing my brain in the pot; grab the knife off the sink and cut once, then twice, emptying the red sauce into the pinkish gray noodles.


I will probably bleed out before I can know what my brain tastes like but the light will not leave my eyes until they roll out of my head because for the first time in my life, I would have truly sati

sfied myself.



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Pencilmarks and Scribbles Magazine was founded in 2017 by Clara Jack to be a home for African writers, asking them to come as they are and giving them room for growth. The publication aims to give back to the Nigerian Literary scene for the things it has given us.