‘cause you planned to study law. And I may

have written this already: Habeus

Corpus in some other journal or book.

Latin got me through med school—I’d just look

in Stedman’s Dictionary—ah, corpus,

corpse, a body, just like yours, only, say,

a little stiffer, with perhaps, a bit

of an associated odor.  But

I don’t smell so good.  You’re the one whose nose

knows the bell’s tolling. Mine couldn’t tell whose

a flower and whose a. . .All right,  what

did make you leave? Was it the kitty lit-

ter in the basement? The moldy sponges

in the sink? Oh, your constitution, left.


by Kelley Jean White


Kelley’s writing has been widely published since 2000 in journals including Exquisite Corpse, Friends Journal, Nimrod, Poet Lore, Rattle, the Journal of the American Medical Association and in a number of chapbooks and full-length collections, most recently Toxic Environment from Boston Poet Press, Two Birds in Flame, poems related to the Shaker Community at Canterbury, NH, from Beech River Books, and “In Memory of the Body Donors,” Covert Press. She have received several honors, including a 2008 grant for poetry from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.

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