My hands, like jumper cables,

my friend explains; they try to get

blocked energy moving again. I lie
on a massage table, eyes half-

shut in a room where the shades
have been drawn against summer light.

Though it doesn’t whinny, I know
there is a dark-maned horse that nibbles

on bleached grass behind a stone wall
in the high field adjacent; I’ve seen it,

on looking out the window early mornings.
Now, my friend taps along certain meridians,

fingertips listening to the body’s pulses
the way a car mechanic might turn on

the ignition to check for engine sound.
I try to imagine what this circuitry

might resemble: the points between heart
and liver and spleen and hand and foot

then back again, the kinds of traffic
moving with different speeds through

the branches. Sometimes it’s hard to believe,
or maybe I’ve just forgotten: how the tight-

ness in my limbs hasn’t always been there, nor
the feeling of a dam about to burst in my chest.

~ for M.

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