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April 26, 2018

In order to repair my wounded finger,

they had to have my arm.


When I woke, I didn’t initially notice

that my arm was missing.


It looked normal by my side,

lying on the blue, foam prop.


Only when I was home in bed

did I understand the full extent of its vacancy:


I rolled over but my arm didn’t follow.

Hopelessly, it flopped down by my side,


dead to touch and neural clues, I realized

The Arm no longer belonged to me.


Throughout that night I kept watch,

to see if my arm had come back home.


When the answer was stillness,

I quietly prayed for its return.


Finally when the nerve unblocked,

I sighed deep thanksgiving


at the slightest movement

of my fingers.


The whole time I couldn’t stop thinking

about my father…



whose stroke took his arm away from him,

whose hand still lies lost in a sling.


The grief he must have felt,

and perhaps, still does.

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