Reconstruction by Dave Hook

Reconstruction by Dave Hook was first published in Gutter 14 as part of our Spoken Word Issue. You can listen to it here:

I wake up nothing but a pile of bones
Jigsaw puzzle spine, ribs like a xylophone
Skeletal scaffolding otherworldly and grey
Skinless finger spiders reacquaint ma skull with ma brain
I stretch ma ribs to cracking point to put my lungs in their cage
Ligaments creep and slowly cover ma frame
Along limbs, weeds grow and spread to function as veins
A ragged breath rasps and sets ma heart pumping again
Eyeballs hop into sockets where they fuse with ma optic nerves
Sheet lightening strikes on grey matter as ma thoughts disperse
Skin over jawbone, stubble on face
Mouth open wide, I reattach ma tongue in its place
One by one I push teeth into gums
Nails into fingers as air bleeds into lungs
After retrieving ma organs from Canopic Jars, I regrow ma scars
All the while ma head aches like a broken heart
Sorry if I’m being kind of oblique
But there’s a crack in ma skull that leaks punchlines in ma sleep
They trickle down ma face, drip, collect in a pool
And a form black shellac disc peppered with grooves
In the morning, the record player sucks it greedily in
Arm puts needle tae skin, inject: the machinery sings
It starts to sink in as the scenery swims
And if you’re all sitting comfortably then we can begin
This is a daily reconstruction
I put the pieces back together but don’t read the instructions
And sometimes there’s parts left over when I’m done
I put them in a box and try not to think of them much