Stories tagged body

A Body Divided, 2

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I came down with polio on September 15, 1953, a mild, smoky day drawing close to autumn outside of Chicago — which also happened to be the exact date of my parents' twenty-first wedding anniversary. Only six months later the Salk vaccine was already b

A Body Divided, 3

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A group of nuns arrived in the middle of my first night at Hinsdale Hospital. I guess I must have dozed off when this odd noise, like curtains being moved, woke me up. At first I couldn't make out what that rustling sound was in the hallway outside my doo

A Body Divided, 4

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After surviving the first night in the hospital, I was put into a shared room to save on expenses, and to make room for the deluge of new cases that were coming in, and that was when I made friends with my roommate, Tommy. He was a boy about the sam

A Body Divided, 5

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Physical therapy was on the agenda every morning, first thing. A nurse would come to my room from the basement floor where they did physical therapy. She'd wrap me in a blanket and put me into a wheelchair, even though it was obvious I didn't need one to

A Body Divided, 6

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When I finally went back to school in the fourth grade, after coming down with polio, my classmates were very welcoming, though I couldn't go outside and run around like them yet at recess or lunch time. That would come, just not right away. But it was th


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Soon after, I notice while washing my face in the shower that the palms of my hands have a new texture, rough and bumpy. I turn off the water, squeeze drops from my hair, and step out of the tub. I wipe my face with a towel and peer at my hands.

Death Masking Love

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She brought the ends of her fingers to her mouth and moistened them in her warm saliva. The whorls of her prints glistened in the harsh light of the room, but it wasn't her own outlines she was interested in raising. His hand lay outstretched in his…


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The sun browbeat me relentlessly, like a one-eyed judge with an unforgiving heart.

I Like It

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My skeleton, mine all mine


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Gibson Park, underneath the grove of trees beside the soccer field. She's buried. But don't say anything yet. Her disappearance will make the news shortly, but it hasn't yet.


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The guide moved along to the next piece of art but I couldn’t seem to pull my eyes from David’s form. He sparked something within me, his sculpted details made me smile in guilty pleasure and I wasn’t ready to leave him yet.

Violence, Interrupted

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In the language of breath, the only certainty is that/at some point, anything will want its body back.

Indian Summer

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I'm wonderin how'd your momma and pop get you to give up a whole summer to spend in this dusty old polio museum we call a house?

How the Body Prepares Itself

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it corrupts the smells// and flavors of the world/ and plants its swollen face


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The body does what a body must