Psychopomp Magazine Fall 2014 - Page 8

Through that summer, her mother tied her arm down, lashing a soft cord over her elbow and around her waist, and then covering it with a sling. It soon became clear that Ouchie was a weight she would have to learn to carry for as long as her heart chose to keep her alive.

Angiography

I know Mac inside and out. I have injected myself into one vein, and followed the path of her. I have been her vessel of friendship. Of protection. Of honesty and anger. I have carried her angst, circling until it diluted and faded. I have shown her what she is capable of and how she works. I have stained her from the inside out to remind her of what she is constructed, made a map of mountains and valleys and lakes of her capillaries, the refreshing pools in her skin. Approached those violent valves and been squeezed, siphoned, pressured into spaces I couldn’t wait to leave before being ejected, rejected again, and flushed along the slippery slides of her arteries to bask in her breath and be rejuvenated. She has tried to purify me, filter me, cleanse me, even expel me, but I still circle, supplying and searching her life. I have braved her colon and measured just how full of shit she can be. I have trickled into her brain and watched the lighting storm of her synapses, darkened her eyes with my trail. Eventually I make a full circle, find myself back where I started with her, only in the time it took me to travel and explore her, she has changed, and I must begin again my expedition, my search for information. Circling back, I find little fragments of myself, droplets of memories, a trace of familiarity and remembrance. I convince myself that I am re-collecting myself, picking myself back up with some sort of magnetism, so I won’t feel so dispersed, so spread thin. But I soon realize I can’t carry myself anymore. Whatever I pick up causes me to drop something else, and I leave a trail behind me. Besides, if I become whole within her, collect and clot in total cohesion, I will kill her. This is the way we are meant to be.

Ablation

Mac works at a residential home for people with developmental disabilities of various kinds. Down Syndrome is the most common, but there are others with Klinefelter’s or severe fetal alcohol syndrome. In the fall, she helps them to harvest the pecans from the acres of orchard

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