How Many Outlets Do You Need to Plug in a Body

Bodies are appliances (plugged in, burnt, stained and bent, infested with mice). Like poems, they stir. What do we become when we are no longer present-tense singular. What I mean is, when the past drapes around necks, trauma choke hold, and the past becomes bits of swollen teeth biting and bruising. Rot. 

Or what I am trying to get at…a body is anthologized with several editors (some un-cited), disordered chapters, an offensive misspelling on page twenty-seven. 

So you place body on shelf. If it matters enough to you, you alphabetize, you catalogue. You forget its there.

Insert dust mites, black mold, cobwebs of broken fingernails and flakes of skin.

You consider taking it off the shelf to read again or (let’s be honest) to read for the first time through. You get comfortable. Sip the tea you’ve steeped. Chew on the biscuits you’ve fanned out on snack tray. Chapter one is too boring. Chapter seven is too dark. You decide to skip to the end, but it is a run-on sentence which began several chapters before. Your tea spills, the biscuits are so dry, you feign a choke. You realize that to understand this body, you must read all its parts. Even the messy, awkwardly worded ones. So you dig your bones further into couch cushions.

This will be awhile.

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