Breath & Shadow

A Journal of Disability Culture and Literature

Autumn 2009
Volume 6, Number 4


Lie Down Spasticus

By P.A. Levy

There's a tensile edge to us;

alloy lightweight
extra strong accessories to our limbs that would

otherwise collapse
with intermittent  jestful ease, to leave us looking drunk

and disorderly
as we pitch and flounder in search of a foothold

claw toes
fight for balance, grapple against non-committed joints

that thoughtlessly
lock at one-eighty; can't sit down, or ninety; can't stand.

We smile, though the effort leaves us exhausted, slow motion

mechanical movements
become the choreographed burr and rust of just being;

metal fatigue
let's go to bed, undressed to titanium in robotica we perform

Meccanno porn
and not even hydraulic suspension or heavy duty lubrication

can prevent
those squeaks, singing out louder than bed springs, when

we rasp
and grind each other to filings.  There's a metal edge to us,

we can't run but we're fucking.

P.A. Levy, having fled his native East End in a wheelchair (polio), now hides in the heart of Suffolk countryside learning the lost arts of hedge mumbling and clod watching.  He has been published in many magazines, and is an original member of the Clueless Collective to be found at: www.cluelesscollective.co.uk.

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