Jillian Weise, “Incision”

The nape of my neck is a tell.
Otherwise you wouldn’t notice
with the layers of clothes: shirt,
vest, scarf, coat.

Undressed, it’s a solitary hole
in the middle of a white wall, you
can’t help but stare, what picture
hung there, what of, what color?

It gets worse than this, you’ll
want to see how far down it goes.
The circular incision top and bottom,
a line contained by points.

The seal of an envelope, opened.

From The Amputee’s Guide to Sex, the debut collection from Weise, an actress and former editorial assistant at The Paris Review. Though Weise is an amputee, her publisher advises readers “the poems have a life of their own” and are not necessarily autobiographical. See also “The Body in Pain” and “Us, Like a Bad Mix Tape,” along with several other poems on her Soft Skull Press page.

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2 April 2007 | poetry |