When pirates first commandeered my body
and steered it into a whirlpool
of symptoms that shifted shape
not charted on my map—life seemed lost
in a proliferation of questions
and tests. And waiting.

What     are you     looking for?

I suppose the nurse meant
not to alarm.
She delivered her response in monotone,
like a tired waitress listing sandwiches at a dull
diner: tuna, egg salad, grilled cheese, ham.
No specials on this menu to excite:
rheumatoid arthritis, HIV, hepatitis, lupus.

But I could read in the lines of her forehead:
Here be dragons.

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