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Tuesday, June 11, 2019


by Mark Ward

“Former nurse Niels Högel—who has admitted to giving potentially lethal drugs to patients so he could try to resuscitate them—has been sentenced by a German court to life in prison for murdering 85 people.” —NPR, June 6, 2019. Photo: Högel in court, awaiting his verdict in Oldenburg, Germany. Credit: Hauke-Christian Dittrich/AFP/Getty Images via NPR.

Their bodies ailing,
they flail, fitting,

disrupting the night’s
boredom. I’m there,

knuckles cracked, ready.

They say to compress
to 120

BPM pop songs:
Staying Alive,

Another One Bites

The Dust. The syringe
makes them erupt,

their hearts needing me,
my steady hands.

Most of them come back.

Sometimes the nights push
the plunger down

and their bodies make
one last complaint.

I watch. Do nothing.

Mark Ward is the author of Circumference (Finishing Line Press, 2018). His work has appeared in The Irish Times, Poetry Ireland Review, Cordite, Assaracus, Softblow, and many more. He is the founding editor of Impossible Archetype, an international journal of LGBTQ+ poetry. He is currently working on his first full-length collection, Nightlight.