during a brutal and grueling battery of tests and blood draws and drinking nasty fluids and waiting and going through the whole thing and not eating for forever, my doctor asks to listen through my back. hike up my shirt a bit in the back and breathe into the cold circle roaming my back. i'm already only half there and terrified when i hear her say, horrified, -- what is this? because in consequence of all of this, i've forgotten about the blue black bruises peeking out of the tops of my low rise jeans swelling its own concentric circles around my lower back. and i stammer, pause, look blankly into her face. and easy lies like i fell or i had an accident won't occur to me until several hours later, instead all i can see is you and me on the hard surface of my bathroom counter several days ago now and how sometimes in the roughness of the way that we are we sometimes leave these visible reminders of ourselves. later, i pass out in the chair, and hope that the blood letting will, this time, be one of the last. ~


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