name / lauren gallaspy

i had an ache i couldn't name.
like southerners who call all sodas coke,
i called it "pain."
propped along my collar bone,
it rolled in motions of devotion:
the chest the head, the heart
and shoulder,
fissures gripping ghosts
of order.

it spurred a thirst for normal names--
the classics!
broken bone,
a bloody nose,
a papercut, a sprain!
each object wants to own its own objection.

is inadvertent, this
accident of malady,
my stubborn, mum mistake.
i can't relieve it any better than
a baby, changed and wailing;
the hurt has swelled as big as infants' mouths
and ranging.

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