Dolan Morgan

“Universal Health Coverage”
The hospital wing
spirals out the lobby, sinks,
flaps back down our tubes.

In all directions
patients are flying, wheel chairs
falling from the sky.

From a distance, the
sick are like balloons, held to
earth by long IVs.

The hospital floats
away, collapses in the
ocean and chokes fish.

The tide rushes in,
tossing pieces of people
and things to the sand.

Now, ambulances
drive emergency patients
straight into the sea.

“In the Room”
British colonists cauterize the asphalt
lashes of the hands we've held,
the fingernail irises crossing
hairy retinas in the sand:

a humid sign-language that reads you,
some semiautomatic carpal-tunnel
diem, wiggling fingers pointed
backwards beyond the blind triggers
and sloshing at the surf of our genitals' fist.

Inroads and ice break ships and trucks
across palms and cheeks, a steamy sweat
hacking tangles of eczema fronds,
follicles grown from our jointed knuckle
speaking a deader Latin:

Dr. Livingstone, I presume?
Ujiji and Mary Tyler Moore come on
the face of the same mountain with one knife
tied behind the other's back,
locked fingers ending slavery

and the triangle trade between you, me,
and the elephants



When the water goes
I come quick, wrench in hand
tool box at the ready.

The pipes are coming up where
they should be sliding down
Some underwear, hair,
and blood spurting out.

Just force it back in, clamp
it all down and head back home.

But from house to house, you peer
through the tubes like
telescopes to somewhere you
believe you remember
but can't,

a piece at a time,
glimpsing skin,
bones, teeth, and varicose veins.

There is someone down in there, stretched
like puddy beneath our foundations

they are moving, grunting,
standing, sitting,
talking and listening

There's a microphone there
in the faucet, recording one drip at a time
Ear to the toilet, a newscast
clogs and mixes with
an advertisement filling up the sink,
the women spilling out the tub

you're mapping it,
every house call more vivid
you can almost see

it unclogging you, mapping you back

to whence you came
a thousand eyes for every home
knowing all the inches
of branches where
you are the foliage, only


And up from the ground you
feel something growing
A Tree, a Fruit


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