You have to believe them—or is it believe in them—
because they have centuries of science
and you have only the last twenty-four hours
               the fall
               a sensation (or was it an illusion)
               hip smashing— bones you have taken for granted—
               against the granite floor
to rely on for/as evidence
Belief is half-grammar (for/as)
half dream
Science is half-hope (as/for)
half hypothesizing
The nurse whose name
I am not sure I heard (correctly)
says as they wheel you from the curtained cubicle
in the Anesthesiology Suite
toward the metal—not granite—slab
in the Surgery Theater
(act as if you are not terrified)
               In the Philippines (I am going home soon)
               we recite healing prayers. Trust me. You’re going to be fine.
               I am reciting a prayer for you.

I don’t believe in prayers
I don’t understand science
I have only grammar and Gabriel’s
               (too prophetic to be wrong)
tender grasp: subject verb object
Let me recite: I thank you
Sima Rabinowitz lives in the Bronx, New York. Her poems have appeared recently in Writers Resist and The CDCPoetry Project. She is the author of The Jewish Fake Book (Elixir Press, 2004) and Murmuration (New Michigan Press, 2006).

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