The Majority of My Teeth

by Samuel

As it appears, I have lost the majority of my teeth. Though, simply not by negligence alone. In truth one or two may have been. But, as any man, woman, or child would do, (When concerning such a prominent facial feature as ones teeth) After having lost one tooth, I began a disciplined regimen of brushing, and gargling, and even flossing too if time permitted. Hour upon hour, cleaning and cleaning, so that the nylon bristles of my toothbrush became frayed and ragged. At which point I would gargle that hideous medicine in my mouth, until; upon losing all flavor, I would swallow it. But still, at irregular intervals, sometimes days, sometimes hours, or months even, a tooth would become weak and loose. And as if by some uncontrollable, obsessive urge, I would assist this tooth in escaping with my tongue. Nudging left and right, moving my tongue to feel all angles of that useless, rotten bone protruding from my gum line. Tasting the small amounts of blood seeping from the tender nerve ending. Left and right, left and right, becoming looser and looser, until finally with a terrific tear and inaudible popping sound, heard only inside my ear drum, the tooth would be free and I would spit it out, blood and all. Feeling around with my tongue, the warm, soft space inside my mouth that was once occupied. Now, this went on for a year it seems, sometimes two, or three teeth, falling out at a given moment. And each time I'd Plead to God:

"Please, spare me my teeth, God. So that I may eat my food. So that I may speak clearly. So that I may smile without contempt for my rotten empty mouth"! But each time, it became more difficult to plead, as I could not annunciate my consonants correctly, and I feared God could not understand me, thus could not help me.

So I continued, strictly adhering to my brushing habits. Not wavering the slightest, even when no amounts of toothpaste could overcome the scarlet red streaks staining the porcelain sink in my restroom. Even as it became apparent that my efforts may in fact be contributing to the deterioration. Left and right I brushed. Simply out of habit. Five or six times a day. My molars, long since have disappeared, I can no longer eat solid foods, which tear my gums and cause impressive amounts of pain. I still maintain a set of upper and lower teeth at the front of my mouth, so that if I am inclined to do so, I may smile, slightly and carefully, so as not to let anybody see the gaping emptiness. And if a particular television show, or story is told, and I feel the urge to laugh out loud, I must cover my mouth, and become embarrassed, excusing myself to the restroom, so that I may brush some more.

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