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Meg Kearney

My father’s body has ceased to shock me.
His skin runs over his bones like a slow
river, rippling where belly meets hip. We’ve
learned how to hold him: one arm each around
his back, a hand braced under a thigh; Mom
and I stand on opposite sides of his
bed and, on the count of three, lift him
onto the bedpan. We close our eyes:
Dad, then me. Oh, he pants, it’s so damn cold
as I tell myself, I am not the first
daughter to do this. Afterward, Mom pulls
his gown down over the stones of his hips
while I train my eyes on the Gold Toe Socks
I’ll later steal, when Mom gives away his suits.