Each month, write a new collection.
THE OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST: GALACTIC WARRIORA time long agoin a galaxy far away A war uncivil raged.As Speech PathologistsUnlicensed in The swallowing lineWon victory overOccupational Therapists.Whose practical living supportOf Eating and Oral CareWas overwhelmed byDubiousTechniques ofThick LiquidChin downAndFluoroscopy.MarketingBy swallowing specialists Bamboozeled DoctorsTo dump their dutyTo assessSwallowing. Medication impact. Cranial nerves.Eating history.Patient And family Desire.MarketingBy swallowing specialists Bamboozled DoctorsTo disregard the dotsOf their Knowledge And TrainingTo spurn responsibilityTo manage This Fundamental.Now Rebel dissent destroyedSwallow therapy mounts.Swallow billing climbs.MeanwhileNursing home stats RevealDehydration. 31-95% Malnutrition. 35-85% Swallow problems.40-60%No Leia Racing Home.HEART OF THE POEMCommon health care practices for patients with swallowing problems or feeding assist needs place patients at risk for dehydration and malnutrition.LAYERSo SURFACE• Adequate food and water is a basic human need.• A pleasurable meal experience can enhance health and social interaction.• The Occupational Therapist role is to maximize independence in functional tasks such as Self Feed/Eating/Meal prep.• Speech Pathologists commonly provide Swallowing Therapy.• DEEPERo Dehydration and malnutrition are common and severly compromise healtho OTs and SLPs have been known to disagree on professional territory and licensing on Swallowing Therapy.o Despite contrary evidence, Speech Pathologists market themselves as experts in Swallowing Therapy with good outcome, securing an income and role.o Commonly used techniques and technology for Swallowing Therapy contribute to dehydration and malnutrition o Tube feeding does not prolong lifeo Physicians, who have both necessary medical background and understanding of patient diagnosis, do not carefully manage the Eating Care Plans for their patients. o Health Professionals commonly misunderstand aspiration risk, overlook dehydration symptoms, and do not insure careful feeding technique.o Malpractice concerns result in high risk averse behaviors by health care providers.WHERE AM I IN THE POEMConsidering the impact of the daily living task of Eating on patient outcomes; the conflicting positions of Occupational Therapists and Speech Pathologists; and the lack of Physician oversight in managing these care plans. REMOVE THROAT CLEARINGFirst stanza gone. Ouch. Bad. Superfluous. Ouch ouch ouch.A FEW WAYS TO MAKE IT MORE SATISFYING-Star wars metaphor is all throat clearing to attempt to gently back into this intense topic with a gimic. Ouch.-First stanza gone -Rework 5th stanza stats in a more compelling fashion.-Intorduce and play with layers of meaning.-Retitle
That titling is much more important than people think. It is often the most resonant part of the poem!
17."This hurts in the way we would rather capture the imageof the sunthan be here to feel it we the shallowdepression in the parking lot that drinks the skyand the doused oil on the water’s surfacealso reflects the cloudsso like our swellingbellies drawing everything that once nurturedthe world inside ourselves." So I cut the initial part of line one, substituting the ending line. I removed a lot of the ambiguous relationships of reflection and counter reflection. I tried to incorporate the photographs core meaning so I can forgo the photograph itself.Instead of a 7 line constraint, I created 7 short line stanzas of two lines each (except for a few).The focus of relationships changed by taking out the womb image, which goes more subtly into swelling bellies.I'm not sure this is clearer, it feels way overt now. I think the heart of this poem has always been a sort of criticism of our current mechanism of living. A lot of the other poems in this collection address the sort of necessary waste that comes from massing people together in cities.This is way outside of my normal mode of writing. Its fun, but scary.
Yeah, it's strange to think of your poems like this, but I enjoy what you're doing, man!
Not about ChocolateThis dot of an M&M cradled in the palm of my handrests on the crossed crease of my life line nudging Saturn’s line of wisdommarked M for mothers who pack lunches dividing Kit Kat barstwo sticks each for lunchbut we were three kids in schooltwo sticks were missed every timeMy tongue licked melted chocolate Rough off fingerprints sweetened byregret because chocolate was never enough knowing twoextra bars should’ve been mineall mine I was oldest and chocolate’snot meant to be sharednot to be kind, or frugal.That was a childhood ago.Today the blue one is staringbut not melting in my hand‘cause this one, this one—is newSeems more explicit. Brings my original sentiment forward, also re-occurring themes