Nathan Hassall

In the beginning, when MD created ill health, the body was a formless void and darkness covered trauma. Eden consisted of Mother, Father, surgeons, patients and the Two Snakes. MD told the surgeons they were free to roam the garden but forbade them from touching the curette of knowledge. MD created darkness and surgical light so patients could receive treatment.

This at last is the drill of my drills, Father (Mother?) says and pumps morphine into the Two Snake’s veins. They awake on life support and wonder where Father disappeared.

Mother is unsteady. She is protective over the Two Snakes. They coil around her ribcage so tight her face turns bright purple and between gasps she mouths, what a beautiful version of Father you Two are.

Mother and the Two Snakes find Father unconscious. The Two Snakes climb a nearby tree, break a red needle off the branch and tell Mother to use it so Father can wake up. In a rage, MD banishes them and amputates the Two Snake’s legs. Mother has her surgical gown removed and is ashamed.


i was told i needed to take pills to make me sleep to make me sleep but unsure i drank hot milk and burnt my tongue and i never did sleep that week despite counting cows who had their udders tossed off by a dairy farmer so i tried to sleep i tried to sleep all week sometimes i shook my box-head and it rattled on the inside and my brothers were snakes and they said why are you twitching and i told them i no longer dream and i got up at 4.23am and had breakfast and the cornflakes were valium and i went back upstairs and lit a lavender candle like the doctor said and my head was angry and it’s hard to sleep when you’re angry and i was told to have a hot bath so i had a warm shower and i could hear my snake brothers snoring through the walls which reminded me of sleep but my mind doesn’t sleep standing in a shower so i pulled at my hair and watched it clog the drain and the steam rushed out of the window and became the rains and all the birds were dying and take these pills they’ll make you sleep but only take two a week otherwise you’ll get addicted and there may be some snake effects but it doesn’t matter as you’ll be sleeping and the sleep effects will make you snake and i grabbed a towel and went to bed and these pills will make me sleep  th ey wi l l make me sn a  ep th        ey wi   ll m     a   ke  m    e s    l   ee ke        i lo ve the  se f u     ck in    g thin   gs

Author Portrait

Nathan Hassall has an MA (Distinction) in Creative Writing from The University of Kent. He is the Editor of two literary magazines, Guttural and The Luxembourg Review. Hassall has been published or is forthcoming in various magazines including, Failed Haiku, Episteme, cattails, Cat on a Leash Review, and Yellow Chair Review. His most recent chapbook, The Flesh and Mortar Prophecy, is available from Amazon.

View the website of Nathan Hassall