There are no words
for this English, squeezed
in my molasses throat.
The white crust stuck corners
of my lips barely pass
each viscous embolus.
Heavy-tongued, I have no choice
but to let it smear,
in dense and clumsy strokes,
my ripened feelings.
In dreams I have called out to you
in beautiful English, each word settled
slowly while you blushed
But tonight I sensed your impatience,
staccato beats, not clumsy like mine,
but hardly waiting. My answer came
like in some nightmare, stifled,
too quiet, and far too late,
my rotten English breaking
on your sharp enamel.
Published online March 01 2012.
Tamar Rubin is a resident physician specializing in pediatrics at the University of Alberta. There is no shortage of inspiration at work, but she wishes she had more time to write about it.