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It Almost Kills Me photo

Arthritis, its triggers: a damp
morning, Fahrenheit drops, and rain,
tannins in red wine, stairmaster
climb, hills and heels, hills on heels,
gluten, night-shade, hard
spirits. Not enough steroids,
the wrong steroids. Stiff neck.
Sitting cross-legged. The hand therapist
affixing a strip of foam around
my toothbrush handle.  Squeezing
a nail cutter with opposable thumbs
that can no longer oppose.
My mother aching for god
to do his job. Clumps of her hair
coming off, that I did not witness
her silken fall. Regrets, confusing
as instruction pamphlets. Breast
cancer month and pink bows
on children’s heads. Jodie Comer
on Killing Eve. The woman
in the sequined dress on 8th
and Market with her rolly
backpack whispering to her good
poodle, ain’t noone gonna touch us,
Britney then and now.
The blues and afternoons my
fingers almost don’t shake holding
the ear of a cup. Amy Winehouse
saying when I come back.
Immigration policy. That it was
mummy who got all our passports
made. Hers will never have a stamp.
The second amendment. Scent
of lemon trees and Mt. Tam brie
with dried figs on a cracker.
Explosion of salt and the fruit’s
good sugar. It’s sun on my tongue.
This insufficient body, this body
well or not, a well of want. The ways
you and I knot. The word Not
as bounty as in that's not nothing.
Forest fires. Lightning.
The vibrator's fastest setting.



image: Doug Paul Case