therapy dog lying on bride on gurney in hallway /startle / crunch / swirl / roll roll roll / dangling upside down held by the seat belt / car roof now floor / dog visiting other patients once he knows his mom is okay / thinks she’s okay / can’t self-forgive / desperately trying to steer / crunch / guilt / shock / pink cloud / how could the hospital miss the concussion / rolling three times / metal crunching / thankful for the dog-car-harness / broken nose / banged up / what happened? / separated shoulder / slightly separated self / shoulder ghost in the torn ligaments / broken story / surgery months later / broken car / broken psyche / crunch / ambulance with self and bride on stretchers, therapy dog riding shotgun / sling / PTSD from the concussion / startle reflex / writing around, not into / morphine / no surgery / oxy / sling / responsible / humpty dumpty drove in the car / humpty dumpty can’t find the scar / can’t drive that freeway for a year / PTSD / concussion / startle / she’s hurt way more than me / guilt / crunch / shoulder still galumphs a bit despite the vorpal scalpel going snicker-snack / anxiety is yours, sayeth the lord / which lord? / I thanked Yahweh, Allah, Buddha, Zoroaster, and the 33 million Hindu gods / can’t focus / roll / avoidance / crunch / Sertraline 50-100-50-100 / off for three weeks to reboot / can Virgil guide me through the nine circles to the time before the three revolutions? / antidepressants having to reboot? / WTF? / dog still protecting the bride when he senses her fear / or startles / my pink cloud is back / startle / rolllllllllllll / spiral / crunch / nice morning for a drive to New York //
Kim Peter Kovac works nationally and internationally in theater for young audiences with an emphasis on new play development and networking. He tells stories on stages as producer of new plays, and tells stories in writing with lineated poems, prose poems, creative non-fiction, flash fiction, haiku, haibun, and microfiction, with work appearing or forthcoming in print in The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts, Frogpond and Mudlark.