Hypochondriac by Chris Tusa
Maybe itâ€™s Emphysema, a shiny black jewel of phlegm
humming like a clump of bees in my chest.
Perhaps a tumor crawling in the crook of my armpit,
a blood clot opening like a tiny red flower in my brain.
Maybe itâ€™s too early to show up on an X-ray,
a kind of cancerous seed planted deep
in my intestine, something like Leukemiaâ€™s ghost
haunting my hollow bones.
The doctor says Iâ€™m fine.
But even now, deep in the dark holes of my eyes
I can feel the cataracts spinning their silver webs.
Even now, in the bony cage of my lungs
I can feel the heart attackâ€™s prologue,
the opening words of some prolific pain
like a bird stabbing its incessant beak
into the ripe red meat of my heart.