The Operation

Remember that there are guardians reserved only for you: night, mist, the blue sky, east, pine boughs in heat, the sexual organs of women, ghosts, graves, the bones, hair and teeth of the deer, and so on… the body you have never named, though you are known by it. You can feel it now, clawing like a small mammal at your groin, a word that is embarrassing, close to groan and loin. Located. A cushion full of pins. A list of all the places you haven’t told. During the ceremonial dismemberment of the body, you read, a Siberian shaman’s heart, liver, and kidneys are replaced with chunks of quartz. She is stuffed with solidified light. Your own mortality? Bruised and thick. Who will see it when they open you up? Favor your left leg, tuck the other inside you like a heron. It is said that you will go through the clouds. You will go through the place where the Doctors go. Be quick. You must be back before they sew you up.

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