Hidden Teeth

The Tooth Fairy broke my second-grade heart with a formal note: You must provide proof that your tooth fell down the drain at school. Get a note from the nurse. My father’s terse message revealed Oz’s wizard behind the curtain. From then on, I hoarded my baby incisors and molars in my sock drawer; they hid in their own secret attic. Several years later, my mother encountered my stash and asked me why. I said each tooth was worth a quarter. Had to prepare for the unknown, I explained. You know, pogroms and Nazis. The Inquisition. How else would we escape?

Rachel Prizant Kotok, addicted to constrained writing, writes letter-sequenced palindromic poetry, microfiction, flash, and short fiction. She was a finalist for Southwest Review’s Morton Marr Poetry Prize and the Tucson Festival of Books Literary Award for Poetry. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Tiferet Journal, Digital Paper, The Centifictionist, Hey, I’m Alive, and Wend Poetry. She teaches human rights-themed academic and creative writing in Northern California.

You can see more of her work in 8.3 and 8.3