Does she bleed anymore?
I’ll have to look it up.
I keep thinking about the plastic diagram
of a woman’s anatomy in the science classroom,
the great hollowed bean where
the bloomed iris of reproduction sits.
In a dream, a careless knock sends it
to scatter on the floor, ovaries rolling
under desks to collect dust.
I’m aware of how full a body feels.
I run thoughts of touch, of climax, and my pelvis swells.
I run the pavements and my pelvis thuds.
I can’t imagine such emptiness.
They scraped her out.
A radical hysterectomy.
A restructured vagina.
Rounds of radiation.
I thought of her the other day
as I did the dishes, scouring
the frying pan with steel wool.
I cried so hard I filled the sink.
The drain was slow to empty.
It held everything.
I hated its ability.
roll off the tongue like it does.
It should require spit, a throaty cough,
a sharp taste.
We are not martyrs, we are matrons.
Please look to our bodies with blades
of scrutiny, waves of patience.
Please believe us when we say “it hurts here.”