you were pulling
a wasp’s sting out of my back
after our fight
you were playing doctor
and i was patient

the wasp was scared
and i could feel you pulling
the hot sting out of the wasp, too
kissing the reddened skin
and saying gently, “don’t jerk”

and i could feel the release
of a thousand and one
wasp stings pulled from the frightened world
by your sad fingers
and tired eyes


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