Six days before the correct diagnosis:
my wife writhes with stabbing pains;
dark clouds and her internal organs
twist in a single oppressive clench.
A gash of light in the east, and now
a tin grin incision in her Buddha belly
reminds us of our daughter’s braces!
We laugh and trace the angry lips
of a fresh six-inch Mona Lisa smile.
Strange ordeal to face in middle age,
but now she wears her scar with pride:
Frankenbelly, she intones, off the slab.
The Story Pages
Emergency Appendectomy for Gepke