with the exception of the episiotomy

i was given during the birth of my twins

no one has ever taken a scalpel to me before

not one surgery

or major procedure ever needed to be performed

until today

.

when a small mass

was removed from the muscular calf

of my left leg

after being administered a local anesthetic

.

a minor thing

i should feel lucky

it isn’t more

.

 

possibly cancer

possibly nothing

possibly

my payback

for dumbassed teenage tanning bed gore

the pathologist is soon to issue a report

 

having been a mortician

i thought i was so fucking hardcore

able to stand the sight of anything

but as i undressed tonight

to find the bandage had come off beneath my pant leg

 

i was unprepared

for the cauterized sight of the hole

for nausea

the room suddenly spinning

cold sweat

and my body crashing to the floor

 

when i saw a piece of myself cut away

and death standing patiently in the bedroom door

 

i don’t fear dying

but i am horrified at the thought

of my leaving my sons alone

in this cruel world