Warning: this life contains substances known
to the state of California to cause cancer,
nausea, dry mouth, pregnancy,
lumbago, swamp fever, the blues, the shakes,
influenza, dizziness, drowsiness, erectile
dysfunction, unintended erectile function,
bird flu, mad cow disease, cat scratch fever,
earache, heartache, heartburn, sunburn, rope burn,
scurvy, dropsy, and irritability. Exposure
to the world may lead to confusion,
melancholic episodes, fits of doubt, moments
of bliss or despair. Life has been known
to be addictive, instilling the desire for more life,
or for other lives, or to transcend life.
The urge to laugh, or to dance, may be
irresistible and contagious.
Until you know how life will affect you, do not
attempt to operate heavy machinery.
We are not responsible for misleading appearances,
unkept promises, or squandered talents.
If plagued by desire, attempt to satisfy it,
except where unwise or immoral. Do not
exceed the recommended dosage. The
condition, that is, existence, may persist
for some decades, but in all recorded cases,
eventually clears up on its own.


Megan Milks is the author of Margaret and the Mystery of the Missing Body (Feminist Press, 2021), a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award in transgender fiction, as well as Slug and Other Stories and Remember the Internet: Tori Amos Bootleg Webring.

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