Anesthesia Blue Ribbon Queen
Cutting me open seven times, this chronic
illness ribbons me to slivers all the time.
Herbalists nod, self-assured: Chronic,
you need good chronic – works every time.
My pills & herbs & self-medications fill a mass grave.
Tinctures held under my tongue. A burning prayer.
Sink drain decay – pregnant with moths, worms – a grave.
Kombu, dulse, estradiol, lacinato – a murmured feeble prayer.
Anesthesia blue ribbon queen! Go ahead, put me under.
How bright! My teeth click like cogs, a smile.
My nails make moons – don’t peel it back don’t see what's under
the skin. I Miss America my joy until it burns to smile.
Shocked into loneliness with disease carved through dawn.
With anchor, identity, and impediment – gone.
Nikita Andester is a camper-dwelling writer with a master’s from the University of Denver in creative nonfiction. With a focus on endometriosis and queerness, she explores identity and vulnerability through fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Her other work can be found in Wild Musette Journal of Music, Mystery, and Myth.