I've always wanted to be a saber-toothed cat.
I run around with my little tape measure, my caliper, and my keen curiosity, examining my lineage going back millions of years. I have traced the eye-sockets of my ancestors. Run my fingers along the sagittal crests, felt the teeth of my distant kin. Teeth that binds us, the stories that bones tell.
I understand them by touch.
I can only put one side of my flesh against the bone.
I want to peel my face off and place it over Boisei. Over afarensis, heidelbergensis, neanderthalensis. Cro-Magnon. Homo sapiens. Know what it is to have that skull in my body. Those teeth. I measure the canines, one inch. Two inches, two and a half... I run my tongue down my own canines. I remember meat rendered by them.
I want to feel the skeleton that belongs to these skulls. I want to read them, learn their languages. This scientific examination piques my curiosity but it leaves me hollow for the meat of their existence.
How many children came forth from these wombs?
How many lived?
How did they die?
What fears, what passions, what tools did these brains conjure in their own time?
I want to go back farther and toast an asteroid. Meet a tetrapod and witness that reptilian grin. Dip my fingers in the Cambrian ocean and feel pikaia swim through my fingers.
time later, millions of years later, I re-articulate an entire skeleton.
have a private moment, my innards & I. My muscles and my organs feel
slightly more protective of the living bone within my own flesh -
and an intense curiosity to see them laid out on a table.