Hip Replacement Ode

Monday, July 16, 2012

A week later, when it takes me only
a couple of minutes to get out of bed,
when I can sit up in the living room
with my partner, and watch the Knicks win,
when I’m well enough that he can go home
to the trees, the pond, the winter garden
of the sky, I suddenly get it that the head of my
femur is gone  — I could never find it again,
even if I could go through the hospital garbage —
and I miss it, I mourn it, knob of a cane
which helped me go wherever I went, old
shepherd’s crook I leaned on and moved forward,
and danced  lovely ridiculous motion, like
a game, a toy, a wild spurt of happy will.
And the love-making the newel post of the
acetabulum was quiet
household witness to, the bone
made by my father and mother, inside
my mother — or it was made by nature’s
arts and crafts, inside her, like a stem,
a green shoot in the womb, which would grow
to a twig, a branch, a trunk, a sore
bole. I had no doubt I wanted it
out, replaced by a joint like a plastic and
titanium one-legged cricket, but this morning
I wanted to reach back for it, through the
swabs in the waste can of the surgical theater,
assemble the jigsaw and piece it together, like
seeking back through a lifetime to find
the grains of love — the grains of reasonable function.

Sunday, July 1, 2012