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telepor   t




A soap’s on.

“How could you?

After all we’ve been—?!”


Your name. You stand,

follow the nurse in the polka dot scrubs

that look like candied chickenpox,

glimpse the landscapes in the hall:

brushstrokes, not inkjet.

Enter the room. Now

the real waiting begins.


No TV, no magazines

to rein in the thorny thoughts

with serrated cavities & eschars

& canker sores & rotting spinach in between—

The door opens: Dr. Whitecoat

with straight white perfectly spaced teeth

shakes hands, sits, asks.

Answer: “—getting worse, & I don’t think—”

Oh but you do—“& I think

something’s wrong.”


Dr. Whiteeth who has been listening

too politely, clears her throat,

opens a sterile portal,

presses a button,

& pushes you through:


the room flashes blue,

electricity ripples tissue

your atoms scatter & reassemble,

you remember every time you laughed

so hard your face forgot how to frown,

the time you stood on the fire escape

overlooking the neon navy void &

thought about it more than a little,


you land hard on your butt, eyes

wet & woozy

your blood feels different & you feel

your heart squeeze itself tight

& you know you survived

& you should be happy you’re alive

but you wish it would slow down

so it doesn’t—you don’t



Dr. Whitecoat with the faded stain

that looks like I don’t know—Idaho

in the left shoulder seam

(how did coffee get there?)

offers a tissue.

You take it, breathe.

Your mind exits the highway.


You are still here.

You are still.

You are.



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