Friday, July 16, 2010

molar living on the cusp

all of my teeth are 64 years old
but tooth #19, a lowly molar,
acting up... on account of there's

a dark hole beneath one of its roots 
big enough for even a musician to make out 
on a smoky xray that never fails to animate a dental type. 
and this one--an endodontist-- is lively about something 
where nerves and bone and tissue carry out their tiny lives in #19. 
i give in. just do it. and then everything fades to buzzy. 
i don't remember. it was the extra gas. i guess. 
he keeps talking through the haze, explaining 
what each new sound is about, as if it will reduce the anxiety? 
enhance the experience? 

there's a jaw expander holding my mouth open, 
and a sexy little blue spandex skirt stretched around #19. 
dental theater. 

later, in the afterglow, a new picture pops up on the screen. 
so many little white lines where the sleek hair-thin canal tool 
snaked in. 

the modern millie in me appreciates the irony:  
lighter by $740 and yet in more pain.

the pioneer woman in me, with 
native intelligence still intact, 
thinks snake bite and oblivion
could have been a reasonable alternative.

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