Emma K. Shibley





A: biting into crust i lost a bracket of my fixed retainer: leftover of
braced youth, wire protrudes just past invisible to annoyance. the last
time i went to the dentist i surprised myself by freaking out. lying on my
back reclined past one hundred eighty degrees w/ three faces above me,
entering my mouth with needley clickclacks and whirr drills, me feeling
vulnerable and out of control — I had mentioned my anxiety and they
hooked me up to laughing gas, felt heady dizzy panicked — trigger
waking up with something else out of my control unasked entering i
am eternally perforated. my tongue bridges inside over out, bonded to
lingual of lower anterior, cause calculus to build up against the surface;
stain with a form of cement. morning has ceased to exist to me.
rigor sleepy, sleepy mortis. i can not wake up until the rape the chase
the death the slow moving through mown mazey parks i realize it has
been all dream. as you can imagine this is hard to explain to whoever
with whom i missed an a.m. appt. co-morbidity pretty macab re word
when you think about it, acorn acronym i wake up if only to strip my bed
repeat rinse. portrait in chalk of me with lover next to: lover sleep sound,
i at home in my bones as waking up woman, reuptake side effect of winsome
insom, ambulant somnolence. when i share sheets i purposefully dehydrate to
avoid eternal sin of wetting the lovesunk bed. mom the retired pelvic
floor physical therapist tells me from the driver’s side to always pee
after, in order to avoid uti. i lose my water under piles of clean clothes
bridging my floor bed to door and, abandoning hope for finding, give up
on dihydrogen monoffsides / hydrochloric oxide entirely. i wake up
headachey a sober hangover and wonder why or how is it so late, do not
know how i missed another alarm, decide catatonia is better than the
shame of being late, excuse excuse o do not know and wonder why. if i
had a dollar for every denied spoon i would take myself out for ice cream
i would find a new dentist