Is it the eight titanium pins
around my knees or the fact

that for three months

the incisions were left open? I grew

to know that plush of inside—
the velvets, the iodine to prevent infection,

the smooth of body cast
like another girl who was exactly

my shape, but calmer than I would ever be.

She lay still, barely shifting, like a vase holding a flower,

which was me with my hot dangers, my
itchy despairs.

In the myth, the girl who is Spring only gets her
power when she chooses the mask of bone.

I did not want the world to be this way.

For weeks, I stared at the dull view out the window
of alleys in moonlight, a few sunken garages,

a dirty-white cat. I stared until these things
became beautiful again.

Something closed inside me, which glinted
like a sharp bright pin.

Dear reader,

I hope you enjoyed the article you just read. It’s just one of the many deeply reported and boundary-pushing stories we publish every day at The Nation. In a time of continued erosion of our fundamental rights and urgent global struggles for peace, independent journalism is now more vital than ever.

As a Nation reader, you are likely an engaged progressive who is passionate about bold ideas. I know I can count on you to help sustain our mission-driven journalism.

This month, we’re kicking off an ambitious Summer Fundraising Campaign with the goal of raising $15,000. With your support, we can continue to produce the hard-hitting journalism you rely on to cut through the noise of conservative, corporate media. Please, donate today.

A better world is out there—and we need your support to reach it.


Katrina vanden Heuvel
Editorial Director and Publisher, The Nation