Poem: Never Trust Anyone Who Doesn’t Limp

By Anita Tanner


Lopsided life,

designed to make us lame,

to rupture our vulnerabilities,

teaches us to walk with a halt,

turn toward the grave

hunchbacked and clubfooted,

left eye nearsighted,

right eye, far,

disproportionately dealt

by fate’s slings and arrows—

left-handed, right-brained,

even our faces are asymmetrical—

deviated septa, long crooked noses,

men with eyebrows not horizontal,

vertebrae not vertical,

women when pregnant leaning backward,

when old, forward.

We’re all being torqued by time,

turned and turned like corkscrews

pressed deeper and deeper into earth,

diamond drill bits:

Philip Careys, Cyranos, Quasimodos.