How many years I’ve carried this body,
And how long its carried me-
An intrinsic facet of my existence
And my identity.
How its struggled from the womb
Targeted while tender,
A bullseye-birthmark stained through systems-
And genes- and gender.
How long pain has walked in stride,
Fingers clasped in mine,
Wracked from earliest childhood,
Constant yet, through time,
Wrecked still, the crawling pain
Shudders my skin awake,
While the cold chill grasping
Does not alleviate my ache.
Bedfellows we’ve been
Thirty-eight years to strive-
One day we both shall die,
But after, only I will come alive!