I offered an intense reading for the League of Canadian Poets BC Yukon and Territories, open mic recently. I was scrambled, volatile, and not in my comfort zone. I’ve tried to capture how it feels to be at the centre of so much emotion while trying to talk about the opioid medication I take for pain management.

Wheelchair, art work, living room, laundry


My psych understood I was after
“fair control,” Understand my pain
will never get better. Not ever,
only intensity changes. Broken up
prose like this might get to be a poem
but now I am waiting for four pm
and my next flight of meds.I’m in
wine valley, though no more
for me since I chose to have surgeons
cut off my left leg below the knee
five years ago to gamble amputation
would put an end to my ankle’s
constant hammering
pain into my brain. 

I take the lowest dose of Suboxone
considered effective, keeping the chocks
blocking the pain from getting on the plane,
providing med enough for fair control to
free my imagination/ be real, you mean
free your hands your arms and every joint
to make it possible to sit and tell the story
about what ails one finger at a time.

This piece has “dud” written all over it. This is
important to say fuckbottom, no not what I mean
find another metaphor as good as so many
others. Spinny wheel races out of the tower
and that’s better but you hurt so much
that’s me I’m talking about snapping suspenders
climbing aboard my gravity defying recliner
cradling my pain, but the yoke’s on me
vertigo ascends the wall over reaches
I tilt a whirl with nothing to hang on to
I’m flung into madness but must not
ever say so, how could I write a poem
when I’m climbing the walls. Now
grab a mask company’s coming.






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