After the knee, the neck, the thin incision,
skin stretched, pricked, pulled for needle,

catheter, scalpel, hope, horror, exposure,
expression rounding the bend to belly slashed

wide for the almost-dead, but still breathing,
or the foot with its faint zipper, arthritic but agile

enough. Even the sagging breast, dug into—
fear excavated—each weighty bygone biopsy

finally declaring what it needs to say, which is
here, now, before, after, between, everything

geometrical lining up to point to crease
not cut: crows feet congregating, wise angles

of seeing, two-stepping, cawing
yesterday, tomorrow, today,

sky’s approaching horizon,
just the rim, really, of tale,

the going or gone unfurling into this
final prognosis of flight—

calligraphy of clouds and skin—
your story of lines soaring.