I come from nowhere Daniel, and nowhere is the exact center of the world. Isn’t that exciting?
I agreed with Anya that it was, even though I wasn’t sure what she meant. And I knew if I asked her to elaborate she would simply repeat what she had said—Nowhere is the exact center of the world. Anya’s way of explaining things was to repeat whatever she had said with greater emphasis, with italicized boldness.
Anya was perversely proud of the fact that her unofficial birthplace had been a Brooklyn trashcan, and that her original background remained an unsolved mystery.
I was sometimes jealous of Anya’s origins. I wished I had come from that special nowhere, and that my family wasn’t my real family but stand-ins for my other family, the real ones who I didn’t know. I didn’t want to meet my real mother and father. I wanted them to remain an intrigue and a possibility. A shadowy idea to which I could feel tethered.
I think Anya felt that way. She never talked about wanting to find her parents. Then again, would you really want to meet the mother or father who would dump you in the trash and leave you to die?
That being said, she never spoke of her circumstances with rancor or bitterness but rather with curiosity and zeal. Perhaps, in her mind, there was no heartless abandonment, because she truly believed she had come from the center of nowhere.
Originally from Brooklyn, NY, writer, poet, spoken word performer, and playwright, John Biscello now lives in Taos, New Mexico. He is the author of three novels: Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale, Raking the Dust, and Nocturne Variations, and a collection of stories, Freeze Tag.
His fiction and poetry has appeared in: Art Times, nthposition, The Wanderlust Review, Ophelia Street, Caper, Polyphony, Dilate, Militant Roger, Chokecherries, Farmhouse, BENT, The 555 Collective, Instigator, Brass Sopaipilla, The Iconoclast, Adobe Walls, Kansas City Voices, and the Tishman Review. His blog--Notes of an Urban Stray--can be read at johnbiscello.blogspot.com. Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale was named Underground Book Reviews 2014 Book of the Year.