“Half Act of a Man,” oil on Canvas, by Johann Heinrich Kosakowsky, 1877.

by Luke Patterson

he was twenty years old with dark eyes.
I will write patient suffers from
paranoid delusion in my run report
and later just call him crazy

to my partner as we smoke cigarettes
outside, drinking diet coke from the EMT
room and thinking about how the post-
surgical degeneration of his left arm

has made it look disparate, a foreign limb
hanging opposite the muscular uninjured right.
I note also the lateral anterior suture on the frontal
cranium that rises in a pale crease of (scar) tissue

just above mistrustful dark eyes. I will later
resolve to never buy a motorcycle,
as we drive bright and loud
toward other eyes, other scars,

the city surrounding us, pressing
up tight against ambulance doors.

omega man

Luke Patterson is a poet and EMT currently living in Houston, Texas. This is his first published work.