Fast Fiction

Brain Storm #16 — by Pamela Hart

Jill Bolte Taylor picks up the brain from a serving tray – it’s only two minutes into her talk – and walks across the TED stage holding three pounds in her gloved hands, opens the halved cortices to reveal lobe and cerebellum sliced in two. Orbo Novo. The new world. Gyrus and Broca. Parietal and occipital. Where names are like continents: cisterna magna or the aqueduct of Sylvius. What country for wound. All the words meaning broken. Like a swan’s neck, one canal curves mid-brain. This fretted kingdom of mindscape and nervous system. You want to warn Jill not all realms can be restored. Which both of you already know.
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Pamela Hart is writer in residence at the Katonah Museum of Art. She was awarded a NEA poetry fellowship in 2013. She’s an editor for the Afghan Women’s Writing Project. Her chapbook, The End of the Body, was published by Toadlily Press. Her poetry has appeared in various journals.