Craig Morgan Teicher was born in 1979 and received an MFA from Columbia University in 2005. He is the author of To Keep Love Blurry (BOA Editions, 2012) and Brenda Is in the Room and Other Poems (Center for Literary Publishing, 2008), winner of the Colorado Prize for Poetry. Also the author of Cradle Book (BOA Editions, 2010), a collection of stories and fables, Teicher is a literary critic, and his essays and reviews have appeared in numerous publications. He currently serves as the director of digital operations at Publishers Weekly and as a poetry editor of The Literary Review. He teaches at The New School and New York University and lives in New Jersey with his wife, the poet Brenda Shaughnessy, and their children.
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In the Waiting Room
magazines from a lost month litter the end
tables. A pretty nurse
pops her head in and says,
The doctor will see you now, though not
to you, and no one stands up—you are
the only one waiting.
But soon the doctor will cast the long shadow
of his diagnosis. You’ve got
a thorn in your paw, a toothache, chronic
wide eyes, fear of fear
of fear itself, time on your hands
slipping between your fingers,
lost lust, purgatory, online pain, short
the tendency to list: short, fat, and forlorn,
ever inoperable . . . O to have
a nurse of your very own, a time-angel, someone
on the one and only payroll
to pass you the pill it’s always time to take, whose
rear your eyes can follow
to Happytown. But now, here, however,
you are skimming an article
about the viral video that sank New York,
then a profile of the man
who played the real-life Michael Jackson.
An article on who really profits
from most chilly wind. On the truth about
close friendship. On ten safe things
to open your mind to. You are an
Elizabeth! You are one of them!
Soon someone will call you in.