Saturday, September 23, 2006

A Mild State of Panic

You ask to see the skin on my elbow, rubbed into a chalky white,
rough with a small diagonal scar, a rotated crescent moon.
When you finish with skin, you proceed to my tongue.
Later, my entire body - needle marks and starvation language
-- held over from the nineties --

You break this down into two roads - one to Heaven,
and, well, you know where the other goes.
Botched surgery leaves one breast slightly larger than the other.
You write notes to return to,
my smile again, then my inner thighs. You stop here.

Write something. Breathe and sigh.

All of this takes an hour and then the nurses return.

On the silver boat, I sail into the antiseptic feverscape
where the body is a motor, then a carnival.

My arms navigate
these Seven Seas of toxicity -
The flashing lights, once love and
lust, now foolish penalties.
-- and the sounds of children
laughing and screaming
around me.


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