It is dark and night outside my window,
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and in the soundless, lit confines of my
room I sit at my old, ivory desk
and anxious with dread for what the rest
of another night may bring.
My ostomy bag, an abhorrent creature that
hugs precariously on one side of my abdomen,
covers my raw and fleshy stoma underneath.
Against my desire, the stoma continually oozes
feces and waste
like a sewer into the ostomy bag, which,
every seven days or so ruptures its seal
and transforms into
a stinking and rancid cabbage
whose fetid odor refuses to stop emanating
until the entire, offensive beast is immediately
uprooted from my body.
So, I sit at my ancient, ivory desk, writing
these cherry-picked words to express
the anxiety and the doldrums
of another night;
and the lonely, isolating, embarrassing, humiliating,
ego-wiping, self-esteem killing, mind-numbing,
soul-shattering, universal, all-embracing,
that weekly offends my nostrils and fills my lungs
because of a thoroughly used-up ostomy bag that
needs to be removed immediately
like an old, decaying vegetable
that has outlived its
It is another cheerless night in the same, old
the nose-blistering smell, however, is only for
"Good verse, like art, is difficult."
--ngoc m. nguyen, aka "poembender"