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Looking for Look Shrapnel in sight

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Looking for Look

A POEM FOR SUNDAY

LEAVING BOISSEVAIN

I like how I smell when I wear cool blue deodorant
lying in bed listening to  girls with guitars rocking
this way rocking that way where was she last night
counting the tips at the end of her shift she was
listening to girls with guitars dishing the blues
Because there may be no tomorrow, or so my mother,
Susann with two ns, would say until the very day
I lay beside her and listened to her die she might have listened
to Patsy Cline when her man wasn’t at home but she would
never be out walking after midnight or writing letters
to old boyfriends  who died in uniform which her man Frank
conscientiously refused to wear; preaching love
in Lena and Boissevain,  taking prescription
amphetamines to keep awake driving home in the dark.

Published by Grain, Summer 2021.

 

I listen to music, read, write poetry and prose, and make videocasts, usually in collaboration with visual and media artist Murray Toews. I am a writer with disabilities, or a disabled writer, or a neurodivergent crip writer. You choose the point of entry for your reading;  there are no border guards.  The welcome mat is out. Stomp your feet and leave your shoes on. 

Love & Surgery (Radiant 2019) is my most recent collection of words about love and loss, including my below-the-left- knee amputation, my most visible disability. "Lousy cartilage genetics,"  the surgeon's note. Lucky for me no phantom leg pain. Disappearing cartilage makes for severe osteoarthritis. Real pain is now an everyday companion, but usually held back enough with meds and meditation, to allow for making poems, stories, jokes, aphorisms all true enough, remembering narrators are unreliable and writers make shit up. 

Afghanistan Confessions, poems in the voice of Canadian soldiers, was published in 2014, boy in 2012. Lucky Man (2005) was nominated for the McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year award.