and there is nothing i can think of
that matters more than to serve
the gods of healing. i take a course
sufficient for licensing, but it is in practice
that the nature of the illness is revealed.
my work is in line with long history
of healing through touch. and this
is a touch-starved, bloated and anxious time.
worse, the shame of a culture
of commodified sex, means
it’s only a matter of time before
the first caller, ashamed to realise
he’s reached a clinic, not a parlour
and massage means therapy, asks anyway
in a pitiable voice, for at least a hand job.
and you know you have to be prepared
to refuse without further breaking the broken.
on the other side of the ledger, it is impossible
to serve some body on the table, to apply
the knowledge of anatomy, physiology
psychology and balance, without
seeing the absolute miracle
written in each lumpen back,
each scarred arm, each worried face
given in trust into my hands.