To Dear Thyroid:
Lay down like a lover
hair spreading out behind you,
offer up your soft neck.
He walks to the switch
to turn off the light.
Papillion, mariposa, farfalla,
farfallina, the thyroid
is a butterfly-shaped gland
on either side of your windpipe.
The sonogram paddle is flat
and cool against your throat.
On the screen are images vague
as finger-swirls in a dusting of snow.
“There it is!Ã¢â‚¬ the nurse says, pointing
delightedly, as if at a long-awaited train arriving or a lost puppy running out from beneath a piece of furniture.
You recline awkwardly, head tipped back
without a place for your arms and hands.
The dapper surgeon, his movements precise, looks almost happy as he presses in the numbing solution; is he humming?
There’s no practice for this dance;
your partners guide you, one hand tilts
the forehead, another pushes up against your back when, after the aspiration’s done, they decide you’ll rise. Go home and learn your new vocabulary, explore the metaphysical: something in you, must come out.
Put all your poems out on the bed;
they were in you, too, till extracted;
like the red that stains the lab slides, evidence of your having been here, and affixed with random symbols somehow corresponding with your name.
Phyllis Capello, 2008
(Bio) Phyllis Capello is an award-winning fiction writer, poet and musician. She lives in Brooklyn.