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I have a kid and that kid was born

Because the hospital legally cut me in half.

See, I was there. I signed the papers.

A lot like student loans. They say, “Here,

Sign here where it says there is a 00001% chance

Of this terrible shit happening.” I did time in that

Measly percentage. They had to re-open a quarter of me.

Had to sign for that, too. I squeezed the bad orange

And still brought it home. Anyway, my son is great.

I am sorry to tell you there’s good knifework.


Couldn’t not stare at the hairy, fat knuckles

As they gripped the metal rail on the hospital bed.

“I can’t even eat watermelon,” they told me. “Let alone

Onion rings.” I rolled over, said nothing.

I can be like that when I’m being wheeled through

The hospital in the middle of the night.


The nice people asked me to cooperate

And let the student doctor poke me in the back

About 4 million times before her supervisor took over.

Then they were really nice and asked me about the radio

Station I wanted for when the big blue sheet went up.

What music I wanted for tugging a baby out of my body.

BRENNA YORK lives in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

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