Our Scars by Cynthia Neely

Our Scars

The long line along my spine,
the new ligament in your knee,
the gash the chainsaw slashed

as you ordered our unruly woods, a wound
so deep you could see right down
to the blanched heart of it. So pristine it didn’t bleed.

The slice above my breast to take the snake
of tubing to my own rebellious heart, a portal for all things
chemical and mean to clean the cancer from my cells.

And that deep seam from pubis to navel
like the cleft of an over-ripe peach,
muscles un-repaired in the haste of need,

the speed of my life gathered in, now
a reminder, each mirror glance, of that chance,
that child, unborn.

The love-tap from a bobcat on your chin,
a boy’s first lesson about all things wild
that can’t be tamed.

by Cynthia Neely

Editor’s Note: This poem beautifully illustrates the mental threads that tie physical scars to emotional ones. The last two lines are brilliant.