One Poem by Peggy Heitmann

Self Portrait Considering the Mastectomy

       When you delete a wing or limb from a creatures’ form,
       it will inevitably cry out against this taking.
             ~ Lucie Brock-Broido

Who will listen
to the futile wailing against the sawtooth

of pare and scrape and suture. Who will notice
a once gently curved chest, now smooth as a flatiron?

Who will hear the heavy-breath
of resignation, off-balance slosh

of water flooding over the rough stone path
until all that is left are dry sockets,

until all that was severed scabs & scars over
like moss covering a tree root.


Peggy Heitmann has published poems in Bethlehem Writer’s Roundtable, Asheville Poetry Review, and Pembroke Magazine, among others. She considers herself both word & visual artist, and a medium. Peggy lives in Raleigh, NC area with her husband and 2 cats.

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