by Matt Yeager
I’ve of necessity been
Recalcitrant in my care of the lawn
But I need forgiven.
You see I have reasons
For being late,
I’d rather stay inside and masturbate,
Than venture outside this season.
“Side Effects No Charge”
by Rick Blum
I woke with an ache deep in my head
so bad I could barely get out of bed
off to the doc I trundled with dread
but to my relief, here’s what he said
This kind of complaint is easy to treat
take these green pills whenever you eat
they’ll make your pain feel softer and sweet
though once in a while the cure’s incomplete
I did just what the doctor did say
and wouldn’t you know the very next day
though the pain in my head had all gone away
it moved to my feet and turned them to gray
Back with the doc, who spoke with a grin
lucky for you it’s your feet not your skin
then I wouldn’t know where to begin
take this shot daily, you’ll feel well again
And better I felt for a couple of hours
’til both ears blew up like ripe cauliflowers
so I hustled back to the medicinal towers
for a third dose of my doc’s healing powers
This is very rare, you must be a freak
though I have to admit, my interest you pique
don’t worry yourself, not everything’s bleak
this spray twice a day restores aural physique
Soon my ears were back to right size
but now my gonads became my demise
swelling like beach balls, I dialed doc Nies
hoping that he would say something wise
Pills stopped the pain, but colored your toes
shots fixed your feet, but made your ears grow
the spray worked great, though now you walk slow
time to pull out all stops, let’s give it a go
Your head pain I’ll zap with harsh radiation
on your feet I’ll perform a twin amputation
the ears will respond to lobe implantation
but your testes, I fear, need total castration
This came as a shock as you might expect
my doc’s super smart, a man I respect
but this was advice I had to reject
instead I devised my own plan to effect
I gave away the green pills for free
the shots and the spray I trashed happily
then fixing the pain that started this spree
tossed my Chinese rock pillow into the sea
“The Dyslexic Pharmacist”
by Michael Cantin
“Take ten pills daily, for one week”
just sounded arduous in my mind.
My throat reflexively shut tight
like a panic room door in protest.
I nodded slowly.
She smiled assuredly.
I paid my fifty one dollar co-pay.
Then I figured it out,
took a calming breath
as I checked the receipt for accuracy.
Satisfied, I at last smiled back.
This was either the most unorthodox flirting
I have ever encountered,
or the best gag in the HMO.
I may be refilling my prescription early.
by Bradley Meyer
I had a pain in my side;
my body wasn’t acting right.
The doctor examined it;
he poked & prodded-
-Does this hurt? No?
-How are your bowel movements?
-Excellent, & yours?
He poked around some more.
-It’s not your appendix.
If it were, you would be dead by now.
-Well, I’m glad it isn’t that.
With certitude, he concluded:
-I’ve examined you &
I don’t think it’s anything.
When my side found out it wasn’t anything,
the pain in it vanished since,
nothing can’t exist.
I feel better for it.
“Love that operates”
by Timothy Pilgrim
Surgeons stroll together, poodle
prancing behind, lust after sailboats
vying for position on the windy lake,
shiver in silence on opposite ends
of a sullen bench. She texts her mom;
he yawns. They order new scalpels
from Amazon. Patients hide
amid shale, wait for wind to die.
Pompom must be about to freeze.
She agrees, tugs the leash,
rises to leave. They shuffle back
to matching SUVs, without words,
hands jammed into pockets,
his into his, hers into hers.
by Denny Greene
Quarantined in a tempered glass box
With dozens of chains and three locks
Were babies with scabies
(And tabes and rabies)
And both camel and monkeypox