Originally published December 2005 in "Pray For Me"

Dissection Day

everything was so beautiful
on dissection day
"you need to know"
they said
"what she really is" and they
placed formaldehyde kisses
on my forehead and
a scalpel in my hand.
why, she is not made of rainbows!
she is not full of glitter or glass she
is just cold grey organs shamefully
laid on the operating table
on dissection day.
and look! she did have a heart but
it was heavy and redgrey not
romantic whatsoever.
she is not miss beauty anymore she
is just a specimen for me to poke
and prod and cut but she
does not bleed anymore she
smells like formaldehyde not clove.
"this is what" they said
"she really is"
touch her scarred brown liver
withered from sipping alcohol not
romantic whatsoever.
"she does not bleed she
cannot be me"
organs placed in jars so she
will live forever floating
not in heaven but in
formaldehyde.
and to think
i loved something so mechanical!
and to think
i believed in her soul!
and i see
she is cold and grey and
real.
not romantic whatsoever.
not enchanting.
not magic.
real.