Matt found a dick at the park in the trash. He pulled it out of the trashcan, took it home, and decided that, being an upright citizen, he would attempt to determine its origin.
“You should call the police,” Matt thought. But then, just as immediately, “Idiot, why would you think to call the police?”
Matt searched online to see who “lost” a dick. He read an article about the Holy Prepuce. He typed in the search bar, “dick cut off dead.” Nothing too recent except a wife who flushed her husband’s dick down the toilet. He typed, “Rittenhouse Square park dead,” then searched more generically, “dead in the park.” Still, no clear search results. There were no recent obituaries that seemed related either. The dick spoke to Matt but didn’t remember who it belonged to.
“Do you happen to remember where you lived before?” Matt asked.
“I think I was homeless.”
“Were you living in the park?”
“I don’t remember living there.”
“It would make sense if you were. Could it have been, it crossed my mind, accidental?”
“No, it wasn’t,” the dick said.
“How do you know that it wasn’t accidental?” Matt asked.
“You’d be terribly surprised how many human body parts are spread throughout this city, and in that park specifically,” it said.
“Do you remember what happened at all?”
“Not exactly. Sort of. I lay down sideways beside the train tracks.” However, the nearest Amtrak stop was several blocks up and the subway ran underground.
Then, it said, “I wasn’t homeless. I lived in a penthouse in Rittenhouse Square Park and I died from domestic violence.”
“You mean your wife cut you off?”
“Yes,” it said.
Matt asked why no one noticed her husband was missing. The dick said it was the victim not of a woman, but a man.
“Does that surprise you?” it asked. “That a man cut me off of another man?”
Matt, who was gay, said, “Not necessarily.”
The dick now said that his husband cut it off during a fight with a pair of vegetable scissors, then flushed it down the toilet.
“Why did he cut your dick off?” Matt asked.
“Because I was a liar,” it said.
“What did you lie about?”
“I lied to him about everything. You know my gender isn’t male, right?”
“Do you remember who you were?” Matt asked.
“Matthew, no, I said I don’t remember.”
“So, you have no recollection of what happened to you?”
“No matter what happened, you can still make the reasonable assumption someone was angry enough with me they decided to cut my dick off,” it said.
Matt secretly went back to the park, but nothing. They did take out the trash every week. By the smell of the paper mill, Matt knew they burned there. Before returning home, he purchased a genetic testing kit, hoping to find a genetic match. He placed the swab in the urethra and collected a sample of D.N.A. They sent it off in the mail, and received an e-mail alerting them when the results were ready.
“Show me,” it said.
The results were presented in a pie chart whose contents were as follows:
- Eastern European (45%);
- European Jewish (45%);
- Subgroup, British & Irish (7%);
- Subgroup, Indian Subcontinent (3%).
Matt said, “Doesn’t seem very specific. I don’t think that’s very useful.”
“Well, at least it’s definitely human.”
“It was circumcised,” Matt said. “I already knew it was human.”
Then, the dick suggested a more professional test, perhaps ordered by a doctor, for better results.
“We could still go to the police,” Matt said. “They could run a sample through the system. You know, basically a rape kit.”
It was the dick this time which said it would be a bad idea to involve the police.
“Is there even a rape kit for a penis?” the dick asked.
“Sure, there is,” Matt answered.
“It wasn’t a crime,” it said to Matt.
“Why can’t you just be honest?” Matt asked. “You told me it wasn’t an accident, someone was angry enough to cut it off.”
“The truth is I died of natural causes,” the dick said.
“I’m not sure I believe that,” Matt replied.
“The truth is it started in my prostate fluid. It spread to my balls and I lost those, too. Doing the procedure when they did spared my vital organs. At least it didn’t spread to my ass. At least I can still fuck.
After the operation, they let me keep my dick and balls. What would I even do with them? I had no idea. It was just something I asked. My husband freaked out about the wall stains. He made me get rid of my dick and my balls before I’d found a proper place for them, so I buried the balls in the ground as a totem and discarded my shaft separately.”
“You’re such a liar,” Matt said instinctively. “You read that article. You just said you died of natural causes.”
Matt took a bottle of hydrogen peroxide and with it doused the dick up and down. From the urethra, which he had bored out to gather the D.N.A., a bit of foam bubbled, and a tiny amount of translucent slime issued from the hole out onto the countertop. Matt dabbed it off the kitchen counter with the tip of his pointer finger.
He recalled the article he had read about the Venerable Agnes Blannbekin, the Virgin. It said she felt the Holy Prepuce on the tip of her tongue, after having prayed long enough for it to appear there. The week that followed, Matt grew ill, brain buzzing near the back. He had visual changes and speech problems. He had involuntary facial responses, the feeling in his brain made him want to open his mouth and laugh, to sometimes strain a smile.
“I still don’t know where this dick came from,” he said. “Whose it is.”
“Well, the guys do run funny in that park,” it told Matt.