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summer/fall 2007 no. 9

 

 

Amputation


After that surgery, my name seemed to me to be no more than a
loose rubric under which at intervals, aspects of myself
occasionally reassembled and functioned.  
ó Larry McMurtry



After drugging and cutting,
split sinews, veins lopped to tree-stumps,
he finds one unplanned side effect:
amputation of his given name.

He dreams in the colors of pain: red bands
over his eyes battle black sunspots.
Half-awake, nerve-cords loosed
from their mooring, he collects
arms or legs for shocked instants,

and, blinking in blood-mist, gropes
along a strange street each house
like the others, iodine brown,
same spread of corners and lines.
No numbers or door-signs, box
follows box; no bell chimes;
none answers his timid knock.

In this town names are snipped away
by slow scissors that twitch across
the fabric of sleep; frayed clouds
blur the edge of the wound.

Who are you? echoes in a blind space
not yet packed with gauze, not filled in
with the seeping ooze of identity.

       

                                                                                       . . . . . . . D. A. Feinfeld

 

D.A. Feinfeld's work has appeared in many journals, including Ploughshares, JAMA, Atlanta Poetry Review, RE:AL, The Hollins Critic, Sulphur River Literary Review, Heliotrope, Slant, and Centennial Review.  He's had poems published in four anthologies: Blood and Bone (University of Iowa Press 1998), Verse and Universe (Milkweed Editions 1998), The Practice of Peace (Sherman Asher Press 2001), and Private Practice (University of Iowa Press 2006).  He has also published three books of poetry: What Do Numbers Dream Of? (University Editions 1997), Bestiary of the Heart (Fithian Press 2000), and Rodinís Eyes (Fithian Press 2004). 

 

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