by Hope Lyca Youngblood
I am on house arrest. I got out of jail five days after April 7 2016 and I am facing felony assault charges. I may wind up in a serious criminal mental institution. I’m afraid of my own mind.
After getting out of a therapy session on the 7th I was filled with guilt. I write horrible things in the name of literature. And I wrote some ugly stuff about Maggie but I really wrote the stuff about me. The voices shifted the POV self-depreciation style but it came out in reverse. A vampire sucking her own blood.
So I call Maggie in front of my therapist to apologize and I get voicemail. My therapist records the conversation. We talk about internet bullying and my fear is that I do it without knowing. Or is it being done to me? Then after the session I say, very disjointed, “Did I do a good job?” To I don’t know who that wasn’t in the room. Maybe there’s an overseer. An agent? There are forces at work that are trying to make me turn on my internet friends.
There are many voices that no one can hear. The highest voice lives above my third eye and is my teacher. But all she really does is put me down and she forces me to confess to her. I’m home and Jenny who I’ve never met calls me and bleeds insanity telling me how fucked I am with illuminati cars and bikers at every rest stop and “our phones let them know when we use the ladies room.” I’m scared cause she tells me that my folks are part of a satanic cult and I should run away. Then the voice leaves the phone call after she hangs up on me and I can hear her when I close my eyes.
“I am your trans sister. Your parents have been raping you and you don’t even know it. Ever wonder why they’re so rich? They made a deal with Zuckerberg and you’re the sacrifice. Your only hope is prolonged and intense hypnosis.”
She gets me to run out of my parent’s house because I threw their care away and I throw my phone in the gutter cause it’s spying on me. Dad gets me in the car and drives me away but I’m sure he’s going to kill me so I run out of the car to the police station. I throw on the worst act. I couldn’t avoid looking like a conman. But I was mustering my feminine self. Cause I know that’s me. But I couldn’t reach it. Instead I pulled out a spoiled actor who must’ve walked out of a sitcom but backwards and very satanic.
While waiting I fake a dialog to god knows who. Maybe the camera that I try to look good for. And I pull my hat back and worry about my looks while talking parasitic and fast.
I get called in. The police woman talks soft but meanwhile my “trans sister” voice is guiding me telling me not to talk but I end up jumping back and forth binary. My options are either 4 rivers or Western State. Two hospitals. Where do I go?
And like a multiple exposure I don’t know who I’m talking to again. The sister speaks for me but I name names and think names and I get them mixed up.
The cop had no interest in them. She asks, “Can you hear me? Are you having suicidal thoughts?”
“Yes, you’re not, or yes you’re having them”
I’m a goldfish. I know what they’re going to do to me. Either I’m hearing it or I know it. The two form a perfect union. They’re going to use me as an informant. Puff.
4 rivers will monitor my friends Facebook profiles and stalk them. God help me I sell them all out so fast! It shows I can’t be trusted and the trans community must hate me! Then I mock a crack up to short circuit Jenny
“I’m the antichrist and Dad’s the devil!” I beat my head against the table and they restrain me.
Mom works a deal to drive me personally to the moderately good hospital and we run out, mom, sister voice, and me; we run home to pack my feminine clothes.
So on the way home the Dave Matthews Band “Crash into me” comes on and dad gets a text message about a car crash happening in town. There’s something funny about these new cell phones. And his new fancy car is pure Zuckerberg, Apple and demon Machiavelli all in a infernal trinity.
So I press him on what the phones are doing to us. And who is texting but he plays dumb although my Tumblr tells me that “Hey Youngblood Fall Out Boy“ is following me. I got real chatty on FB a few weeks prior with a girl that dresses like a Warhol model about a FOB show. Adding to that, there was a suicide attempt close to the Youngblood’s True Value property a week ago. I get all of this information from eavesdrops and the soft voices of my folks when I’m not in the room. They get notified by text. I go to look up the blog and my phone locks up. And things on Facebook “like” themselves.
Dad won’t tell me what’s going on with our phones and what’s going on with all three of us. We rush to Lourdes. We reach Poplar road and another song comes on the radio but this one says “Hey girl get out of the car” or something.
Dad’s new car has buttons in place of cranks so I push the off button and the car stops in the middle of the highway. I jump out. I am a runaway. I find a few feet of woodlands and huff April frost and a cop finds me when I get to a ditch by the side of the road.
“Turn around sir!” he says, but I am a woman. He yells sir like he’s chewing gum but I don’t want to look at him. He tackles me and starts to choke me. His breath is in my ear and I am revolted at how good the warmth feels. And I kick him to make him stop then another officer grabs my legs and they taze me twice. The “dickheaded one” who will soon earn that name throws me into the police cruiser. So I’m there with only the dickheaded one. And we roll. The radio plays bubblegum and the auto tune cries “Hit on me”.
I’m starting to think this is a meta game, so I follow asking “You want your dick sucked?” out loud and he plays along smiling; thinking what great evidence. God I didn’t know what I was doing. I thought this would get me to the next level.
“Yeah I want my dick sucked.” He smiles but I’m not scared anymore. The radio will tell me what to do. And his smile gets bigger but he throws me out of the car when we’re at the station with no rights read and they arrest me just then. I escaped a blow job.
I’m handcuffed to a torture device, Jenny tells me how Hitler I am and how I destroyed the world and this time she says DON’T TELL THEM ANYTHING! And I stay silent for less than ten minutes while I’m let in on my fate. I’m dead. I’m in hell or torture central. They did it to Chelsea and they’re going to do it to me. I have no Idea what they have in store but I’m damned. I ratted on my trans sisters and now they’re not secret girls anymore. Cover. Blown. I talk saying memes that Maggie sent me like atheist stuff. Flying Spaghetti Monster satire and Chemtrail psychobabble trying to hot wire the memes of all my friend’s profiles.
And just like that I vampire their interrogation giving them word salad. But the salad is too real. Enter the funhouse. I swear that the Mayfield cops use the same Guantanamo methods cause in the room they put me in the radiator smells like chemicals and the heat is unbearable. Plus, Jenny is still in my head. That fucking glass voice mimics every genuine thought I have and she spits it back at me with guilt threefold. All my panic materializes into a loins roar which seems to bounce across the cell. It’s my voice. I’m screaming like I’m in an emotional sweat lodge and with no door opened, three cops appear.
They’re staring at me, standing directly above me and smiling dead quiet. Like they’re sucking my screams. “Stop screaming or you’ll get the spray!”, Biggie says. He looks like a vampire praying mantis. His 8 bit body was so symmetrical with a black ghost third eye drawing the left side and right side inward and identical like invisible mantis pinwheels. He grabs me and sprays mace in my eyes and I’m back in the handcuff chair. Then Biggie sprays something on me saying its water. It burns so bad and I scream to the gentle souls that can hear me “It’s not water! They’re using us!” Everything becomes a blur. Like a Monet painting of hell. My eyes are full of vaseline and I fight to keep them open.
I can tell the humans from the vampires easy. The humans wear white and give medicine with a touch. But Biggies a master at erasing them from themselves.
“Honey what’s wrong?” A female nurse touches my handcuffed arm.
I scream “They walk among us!”
Biggie taps and sings top 40 and she turns around like a toy car hitting a wall.
“They are vampires walking among us!”
When any human gets close to the truth, they turn your “no” into a “yes” and back and forth where you end up confessing by denial.
Tap. Tap. He picks up the “water” and stares with pinball eyes.
So just like that, when the white coats start questioning their server Biggie cancels the line. The girl in the next cell sings compulsively but I don’t know the song. I think she’s suicidal and I answer with Television’s “Venus de milo” cause that’s Karen’s song. Karen got the nine of cups and messaged me her suicide intent so I take a a photo of the Television record next to my non binary Mahonia plant. I named them Venus. And the photo comes out on a secret fb group hoping to reach poor suicidal Karen cause she believes plants are angels and has been nursing a fern named Sigma for 4 years. Another code cracked I think and the meme is out. But the cops jeer at me and turn my brain inside out. Then I look down to see bandages around my handcuffed wrists. Biggie set me up to look like a suicide victim and the nurse examined me with fresh suicide sympathy and I start to believe this meme that Biggie pulled.
And then I’m proselytizing and I save the souls by example. The L. Cohen song “Dress rehearsal rag” comes on in my head and I’m the dress rehearsal suicide so I sing “Venus” louder. The cops do a routine of Hee Haw.
They throw me into a normal cell this time and I continue freaking. No one listens to my inside reality. Do my memes help or do they cause suicides? I’m thinking how easily I let my sisters be harassed and that I started a huge string of suicides and my sentence was to sit in this cell and eat doctored chicken salad and listen to the pain I set in motion.
“The chicken is human flesh! You’ll eat sooner or later boy. For eternity you will eat your own kind. And every person in the next cell will be a trans teen and they’ll kill themselves and eat it and you can’t stop the death you caused. Your parents never raped you. You made that deal to be a woman cause you hate trannies deep down. Welcome to womanhood tranny. You’ll never be a cis woman!”
Jenny has a voice like a screech owl. So I try to get out of it. Where do you go when you die in hell? There’s always the jailhouse toilet bowl. I put my head in it to drown myself. It was peaceful when I sucked the water into my lungs and I get close to passing out when they come get me. Something in me says they wanted to see how long I’d drown myself for. They drag me into the chair but I don’t get sprayed this time. I get drugged with I don’t know what. The cops take off their face and show their vampire tattoos grimacing under their skin and they fuck my mind; I can’t tell thought from voice or talk from eye work.
The cops are horny. The old one’s trousers writhe like a velvet eel and the gang throw sex back and forth.
“Ever seen a bitch come like a man?”
The lone female cop is vulgar saying, “My pussy gets the wettest.”
Onward I go saying short one liners thrown into the depths and they fish it out of me and my poem’s opening line changes from “stabbing balloons with tarot swords” to “Stabbing little girls with tarot swords.” Oh my fucking god they’re revising me!
So now I go full-fledged unwanted sexual thought confessional with the judges as the witnesses and I see the hell Jenny has measured out for me. My mind is being licked clean and broadcast on Facebook. There’s cities of schizophrenics that are being milked this way. The older good-old boy kicks his foot like he’s orgasmic and he fucks my mind and smiles real slow and snake like while the other cops build me up again talking more boring sex. I think that they’re using me for an agent without memory of the orders and I learn nothing from Jenny’s lesson cause then “I’ll do it” comes out of my mouth.
Like a rag doll and with their customary “man” they threw me back to the silence of the Danny DeVito mirror with no shaving razor allowed. They never had asked what I would do when I said I’d do it but we all know we’re talking about work as a Facebook sewer. But with whatever the fuck drug they gave me cause I’m buzzing all over and it doesn’t feel altogether bad. And I start thinking but I see my news feed on the cell walls and I’m posting thoughts of all my trans FB friends and turning everyone in now. God help us I’m releasing the trolls. Licked clean. This is a truth drug obviously and it’s beyond my control. They pick me and post me till I can’t pace anymore.
And, in between tagging friends that come out of me like guitar solos, I lament. And the thought-confession keeps going till my legs can’t stand anymore and the drug puts me down on the shit stained mattress. I wake up feeling slightly better but the cops are still hateful. First day gone and four more to go. Second day morning comes and “One” opens the slot.
“Do you realize that you’re being charged with felony assault on a police officer?”
I say yes but I don’t understand anything anymore.
It’s my first write up ever. I wake up and scan my bruises silent. Blue bursts of cartography. A new world map. And all I can worry about is that I want to apologize to the trans sister. Cause the only person I know is no one. I’m just a seed in Hiroshima dirt.
The food starts to taste better and I see my mom on the second day for fifteen minutes. The cops are real secretive and love to trick me into losing more and more of my rights. They wouldn’t let me brush my teeth and I can’t see anything cause my glasses are a deadly weapon. But I mustered up the courage to figure out which one to ask for a shower on the third day. So the Einstein breakthrough of showering led to getting the plastic window slot uncovered. And I had toothbrush privileges. And all the female cops are terrified of me. I’m sure that there were rumors of me being a sex offender. For one thing I wasn’t able to see or even be aware of other inmates save for seeing the single file lines out my window on sharp times. But If I stared too long the Dickheaded One would do a parody of Norman Bates.
Then I overhear a group of them. A southern voice that sounds like a worshiper reports a crime on the phone. I see her in my mind as a sweet old lady and she cracks and goes out of reception but she’s nice and she’s a break from silence. They have her on speaker phone for all to gawk. The pigs lead her description of the perpetrator she describes to someone who fits MY description. Even going so far as to calling him “Way”. My Facebook name was “Waex” Pronounced “Y X”. But they fuck everything up just enough.
So “Way” looks like Michal Bolton, wears a trench coat and reads “Silence of the lambs”. Pulp ignorance I want to post but they have the community standards. All the while this poor old woman begs for help while they guffaw and reel emotively like it’s a goddamn prank call!
So I’m livid and around that time they let me watch television locked in the chapel. Of course I had the right to do that on the second day if I knew the chapel existed but there you go. My ignorance. Anyway the TV is nothing and I don’t know how to operate it, so I unplug it and start playing the piano but I had to stop. Cause I don’t want to be laughed at.
Then the Dickheaded One butters me up, asking if I played street piano and what my favorite songs are. Wow dude like you’re really into my songs. I feel like saying that, but I just ignore him. He’s setting me up. And he got my shoe size out of me to give me sandals. Sandals only come in one size. They’re framing me for sure.
This chapel is creepier than the cell cause their library is walls of bibles and the murals are major disturbing. Three crucified Christs with concrete blood stare direct center. While the ghost faces of the community below him look straight into you kind of like an eye magnet repelled by the Christs. One of them has horns and a pitchfork. It reads like a hodge-podge of who’s who in the bible mixed with who to hate. All staring at me like the cops did to silence my screams. Then I find out I can use the telephone but I have to get a card and I can’t do that till Wednesday. It’s Saturday. So no way to groom and no phone and no way out of a white cell lit like I’m in surgery. With a bean mattress to sleep on with no pillow.
That’s when I find out that the judge is working to get me sent to the criminally insane asylum next to LaGrange prison. It’s the only one that allows people with a felony charge over their head. For men. So it’s a guarantee I’ll get raped or cut up for being trans.
Shit though it scares me to think of my FB friend’s names! Thinking in code comes out too robotic. And I feel like a cop and maybe the cop-in-me is what the trans community sees. Major dysphoria. I overhear voices cut in and out of static cling.
“He’s very suggestable. I recommend using him as an agent.”Shit I’m the Manchurian candidate.
Then they laugh “Look at that one!”
(More mean laughter)
God help me they’ve found my friends profiles! I can’t take it! I ask for help and Biggie comes in. He answers my questions.
“I told you I’d get you help. Are you through acting like a bad ass?”
The vampire is gone and in its place a linebacker with a badge shines through and when he leaves I don’t hate him like I used to. So is he mercy or control? Anyway I still didn’t have any hope.
So grey days follow grey till at last the trans voices stop long enough to think about my trial at the same time I see black holes in the colorless concrete wall. Do I say I want to go to La Grange or do I go to trial? And I’m still pacing like a runaway train.
The window lets me see out so I stare at Dickhead like I’m reverse interrogating him with batting lashes and the dickheaded one is talking about Percocet. He sees my eyes so he comes over and stares back like a cartoon spy but I’m so pissed off I stick with my stare.
The heavy cell door gives me courage. Like a Mesmer tank.
And I call him a dick and “boy how pretty your eyes are” to get his homophobe goat and he writes everything down in the list that they’re all playing on me. This list is going to be used in my trial and paranoia’s back. This goes on till Monday and I must think of what I’m going to say to the public defender. Then the grey cops take me to the big plastic window and phone to see my parents and my brother.
My family drips compassion and I feel better. My brother Tony asks what they did to me and I tell him that I fall a lot but he knows what that means. He gets livid too. I tell my mom how scared I am of La grange and she tells me it will be ok. And for a while I’m back to peace.
A few more hours of pacing back in the white cell and I’m ready to see the judge in the chapel telescreen style. The good old giving the bail-setting-sermon says not to go to Water Valley at night, off camera, and I get ideas that this fat one is in the KKK. He has the howling drawl of a racist and every inmate in this chapel are white. The inmates all sing regret, regret, regret and the cop tells me to say age, name, address once I’m on television.
So I go on camera and broadcast the deadname and my biographic debris. Serendipity. My lawyer’s name is Wesley (my dead name) and through the magic of television I say my cues and the Judge puts me on house arrest with no ankle albatross required. They trust my parents to take care of me and my folks are actually very good and loving towards me. Jenny is a liar. The abuse mystery is fiction. I know now cause my parents saved my damsel in distress and they close my tripping sight for sore eyes. They coddle and care.
So we all go to McDonalds and I eat shit that tastes like gold and I rant all the way home about my fear. Tony humors me and we watch “Buzzfeed Yellow” at my request. But the cops did something to it. It’s grey and boring. Tony lets me watch what I want so we go back and forth, watching “Pasion of Joan of Arc” on youtube and some Godard movie on Hulu while I lock the doors and close the blinds.
House arrest goes on till my saved up Zyprexa gets depleted and we see a nurse who is Japanese and nice to me and she fills the script. The Zyprexa sinks me into eating again and I’m getting better but fatter. Sane is better than skinny everyone tells me and I realize that most of what happened to me was delusion and I was falsely arrested. And maybe my phone’s not a spy even though the iCloud and Onedrive freaks me the fuck out.
And the Zyprexa sinks me down some more. All this time my family calls me She/her pronouns and my preferred name. I’m back to transitioning plus I have my hormones again. So I see that I have supportive parents and remorse comes out for how I treated them. The molestation bit hurts to remember. All untrue. My brother verified that they never touched us but how many people on God’s earth did I private message on FB?
So maybe that was what my Labyrinthine mind was feeling guilty about and the minotaur rammed that up my fragile ceiling? I don’t know yet but I do know never to go to the Mayfield police for help. And by all means necessary avoid Water Valley.
Well my birthday happened while I’m under and my cis girlfriend trio comes over to celebrate and I’m happy, getting a painting of myself all femmed up from Mary and a Nikon F3 from my folks. Things are going smooth. Everyone strokes my fear saying that I will be let go. And the day comes knocking where I will be set free. I have stubble cause I’m getting laser the day after the trial. I hope.
And I wait wait wait until a gaggle of us are called in and given the grave scare; told not to talk to the inmates and we get the respect sermons. No cell phones or weapons and dad takes his phone to the car. Then I stand almost forgetting how to and the judge gavels and speaks.
“You are released without prejudice. You are free to go”
I laugh on the inside but no one gets the joke.
Hope Lyca Youngblood is a trans writer from Kentucky who uses she/her pronouns. After some hospitalizations due to her Schizoaffective disorder she found a healing effect through the writings of Gertrude Stein. Hope is currently enrolled at Murray State University studying photography.
by Hope Lyca Youngblood