That’s right. The Master of Horror himself is responsible for my unusual name with a Y in a very uncomfortable place…
Like the back of a Volkswagen?
Yes. Exactly like that.
Most will choose their baby’s name by one of a few common selection tools. This may happen before it even graduates to zygote status, or it may be an on-the-way-to-the-hospital sort of call. Perhaps name books are perused. Maybe you both wrote your top three on folded squares of paper, installed them into a jar, shook, and plucked at random. There may have been an unfortunate attachment to a Great Aunt Millicent.
But ever the questioner, ever the reader, my mother, well she did so stray from that sole-tamped path.
I suppose for you to truly surround with your head the doings in this here tale, it would behoove us to rewind a little.
Imagine a 26 year old butter-tressed wordsmith, aflutter in the early ’80s upon a new chapter in her life – a child on the way in months and weeks. Our flaxen lovely is taken breathless by a fiction author, one Stephen Edwin King. You know the one, Stephen King of Christine and Carrie? He names so many of his books for women, a sea captain and his masted vessels of lyrical expression, named for nymphs of yore.
So she reads, this blue-eyed beauty, gauzy in flowy embroidered shirts and bell bottoms. She reads, she devours, she absorbs, she becomes. She looks like me. Because she’s my mother. And upon that mirror-frost winter in the year nineteen hundred and eighty two, in the South Hills of Pittsburgh, she did so happily tuck her legs, slightly longer than my own, underneath her, and she read. That one particular month she had parted the jacketed covers of a slice of King’s psyche called The Stand. In it, she came across a character whose name sang up to her from the heavy textured pages. That character was Dayna Jurgens.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I am the lesbian heroine who went west.
I also slice my own throat open on a busted hunk of window glass and watch helpless from the netherworld as my crimson corpse is defiled but hey, details.