Cameron Morse

Declining Father on the declinedeclines anyfurther treatments Goes downhill with his back turned verbs away from verbstheir tedium of unnecessary verbiage declensions * FatherChristmas GodFather allthose upper caseletters Mayyou end by locking upyourself in selfdoubt in ALL CAPS May I * My hands shakerandomly When I try to type my fingers fallall over the keyboard the patteringtypography of rain * In the olden days Mavis BeaconTeaches or taught? TypingDad prissily posturedfingers arched above the buttonscorrectly assigned to as d f j k l ; who had required a typist

Functionality Take me inside take meinside your mouth your languagemachine * Woodpeckerconfirmed origin of the insideof a barreldrum startled drilling forgutter ants long at last is gone * Scrutinizing meat breakfast Lili stares while Idrag avocado peel over the hookof my left hand scraping slicedgreen meat over the curledfingers she insists I’m losing the use ofout of laziness * March charm wearing off?This tinyspot signifyinga turn in the poem another birdhouse droppedduring last night’sthunderstorm

Toxicity Gadolinium hangover drug stored in myblood since yesterdayjunk yard slung * My new medical—notneuro—oncologist’sname I hear pronouncedin the virtual waitingroom, “Mehta” as in narrative * Awake or awakenedby lamplight Ihaving read readingmay return myself to sleepopen my PostmodernAmerican Poetry * Leafy vortex of the driveway a shriveled whirlwind Gritof coffee groundsor actual dirt in my mouth impossible to tell the difference * Test results in two sectionsNarrative first then Impression metanarrative firstimpression * Because sideeffects of the contrastagent used in MRI’sare also symptomsof the tumorthe MRI’s are designedto stake out I am either/orall the time I lieawake reviewingmy life’s mostcringeworthy episodes a cliffhanger ending

Cameron Morse is Senior Reviews editor at Harbor Review, a poetry editor at Harbor Editions, and the author of six collections of poetry. His first, Fall Risk, won Glass Lyre Press’s 2018 Best Book Award. His latest is Far Other (Woodley Press, 2020). He holds and MFA from the University of Kansas City—Missouri and lives in Independence, Missouri, with his wife Lili and two children. For more information, check out his Facebook page or website.