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2006-10-17

Hannelore Schmatz
B. 2.16.1940 Germany / D. 10.2.1979 See Below
Exhaustion

Drowsy thoughts down from the top of Mount Everest
I’d have had
no nose
missing fingers, missing toes
prosthetic shoes and surgeons’ bills
a lifetime of antibacterial salves
and ambered gauze

Occasional thoughts on the wrong coast from Hollywood
I’d have had
no nose
missing septum, missing passages
credit card debt and surgeons’ bills
a lifetime of Narcotics Anonymous meetings
and avoided looks

Running thoughts upon the road not taken to academia
I’d have had
a nose ring once
fleshed-in piercing, fleshed-in midriff
former students and former student lovers
a life spent in terror of e-mail
and ethics litigation

Related thoughts from the outside of traditional matrimony
I’d have had
an imperfect copy of my nose
or maybe two, or maybe none
half at best and divorce attorney’s bills
a life sentence to misdirected mail
and gritted courtesies

Pentagrammatical thoughts to drive off last week’s job
I’d have had
to hold my nose by now
their stinking, my stinking
unanswered e-mails and neglected cats
a lifetime’s enough of bronchitis
and angry mirror gazing

Consolation Site: 7 summits

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