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“You have a nervous stomach. Try to be calmer.”
-my family doctor
Encopresis is not
my friend.
Every morning
the prospect
of a fresh day
turns old food into
Diagnosis is
like shooting
at stars.
Life settles never.
Nor the
psalterium. I’m
stuck at the loose end
of the sentence,
the spot where
we are all humbled
and made human.
The day is a chain.
Each link
rumbles like a GI
on maneuvers.
It’s a separate language,
my borborygmus,
too many verbs and
cantankerous adjectives.
And too few
solid, adjuvant nouns.


Corey Mesler has published in numerous journals and anthologies. He has published two novels, Talk: A Novel in Dialogue (2002) and We Are Billion-Year-Old Carbon (2006). His first full length poetry collection, Some Identity Problems (2008), is out from Foothills Publishing. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize numerous times, and one of his poems was chosen for Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Almanac. He has two children, Toby, age 19, and Chloe, age 12. With his wife, he runs Burke’s Book Store, one of the country’s oldest (1875) and best independent bookstores. He also claims to have written “These Boots are Made for Walking.” He can be found at

© 2008, Corey Mesler

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