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I'll Try Anything Once - Poem

  • Published: 2011-05-19 - Contact: Liz Whiteacre
  • Synopsis: I'll Try Anything Once is a Poem by Liz Whiteacre relating to spinal injury and disability.

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I'll Try Anything Once is a Poem by Liz Whiteacre relating to spinal injury and disability.

Liz Whiteacre is an Associate Professor of English at College of DuPage and a recipient of the 2010 Inglis Poetry House Award and 2008 Fesle Fenstermaker Prize awarded by Indiana University.

Her poetry has been published in Wordgathering, Etchings, The Prairie Light Review, and is forthcoming in The Survivor Chronicles.

Liz suffered a spinal injury in 2000, which is the catalyst for the poems she has written.

I'll Try Anything Once

Seven days after the accident - still no medical treatment.
Propped in a lawn chair by a back door that bangs shut,
a friend tells me of chiropractors
who might treat me until I am able to pay.

I wait for some lady to return from vacation to process
my injury paperwork. I am without MRIs,
neurological exams, pain management medications
- a ghost who hovers above furniture while her body
rants like a toddler beating the floor,
only anchored by arm rests.

After the party, I can't find my Gloria Gainer CD,
must have lost it during my move to this town.
Mid-morning, bummed without soundtrack, I make the call
to the chiropractor scrawled on a pink Post It.

I inch to the chiropractors' like a caterpillar
where they kindly ice, massage, electrocute,
and ultrasound my broken parts.

Sandal placed after sandal after sandal,
arms spread wide like the Wright's first plane,
the shuffle gives me time to consider cells that scream,
beg relief. Cells I don't know by name chatter
incessantly, keep me from noticing
hummingbirds in the trees,
clouds' shadows shimmying on the concrete,
cool breezes from office doors that promise relief.

Liz Whiteacre


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