NOTE TO MY SURGEON
Not much to ask, and well within the powers
of your advanced and technological skills:
Doctor, give me back my youth––
but just the part I lack today, a working right knee
to do my bidding without complaint,
a willing servant to jump with joy
if called for, take me in the paint
for a tidy if contested lay-up, twist
full circle and let me take down
that agile halfback for no gain.
As for the hormones and hesitations,
the long nights of introspection,
intemperate outbursts, excessive
love of several drugs, and angry demands
for a perfect world in which I see
my name in lights, hit a jackpot
the size of a mansion in Beverly Hills,
and travel the world for conferences
with gurus, satraps, prime ministers,
and literati: I’m not demanding miracles.
Will settle for a functional body
and a little hand-holding from my health plan,
perhaps a no-interest payment scheme,
and a nice cold apple juice
when you’ve cut and stitched
and brought me back alive.
By Will Walker
Will Walker received his bachelor’s degree in English history and literature from Harvard College. He has attended numerous writing workshops with Marie Howe, Thea Sullivan, Gail Mazur, Robert Pinsky, Alan Shapiro, and Mark Doty. He was also an editor of the Haight Ashbury Literary Journal. Will Walker’s work has appeared in Alabama Literary Review, Apricity Magazine, Bark, Blue, Blue Lake Review, BoomerLitMag, Broken Plate, Burningword, Chagrin River Review, Common Ground Review, and more. His chapbook, Carrying Water, was published by Pudding House Press, and his full-length collection, Wednesday After Lunch, is a Blue Light Press Book Award Winner (2008).