an ode to strep throat

By Jessica Powers

there was once a Christmas Eve which I spent in the hospital:  
a swollen throat and a body so hot the snow turned to puddles around me.

and you were there with a bag full of presents–the skinniest Santa Claus  
I had ever seen. I remember there being palettes of eyeshadow, all 

named things to match the season. I remember your toothy smile, as I 
made incisions in red and green paper with my pubescent fingers. 

when you were my age, you said, your throat did not care for you either  
and now it is this way again–your body parts always becoming one

another. I wondered if I was anything like you, and perhaps it was our  
throats which connected us, the esophagus being the pathway to the heart. 

Jessica Powers is a Chicago-based poet and writer. Her work has appeared in Hair Trigger and Ransack Press. She is currently buying too many books and looking forward to writing on the train again someday. Find her on Twitter and Instagram.

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