Amy Barlow Liberatore… stories of lost years, wild times, mental variety, faith, and lots of jazz

Tag Archives: Dentists

Mama Needs New Ones

Teeth trashed, vacancies galore, by years of
barely-there dental care; many are
little more than amalgam fillings
One side had no molars, no
balance in chewing my food
Migraines and TMJ the result

Still, the news hit me like a brick:
UPPER PLATE. Trash the few
remaining enamel pieces on the
sorry chess board known as
my mouth. Like the man said,
You can’t cheat breath.

In the office, equipment fences
me in, a gravelly voice says,
“Here we go” (WE?!) And me,
stranded in a loop-de-loop of
tentacled dental equipment –
over, around, inside – yikes

Everything was done in a snap
A temporary plate was shoved in
and it’s so thick it makes me
lithp, but I’ll get a final one soon.
Everyone notices I’m smiling once more…

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

Yes, it’s true. Years of second-hand smoke from playing in jazz clubs apparently didn’t help the enamel on my teeth, either. THANK YOU Philip Morris and co. But at least I can smile as widely as Julia Roberts, and somehow, I had come to miss that smile, as I tried in vain all those months to half-grin to hide the missing teeth.

This used the “baker’s dozen” words at the Sunday Whirl. Hop over and check out some great poetry from all over the world! Also in the sidebars at Imaginary Garden With Real Toads and the Poetry Pantry at Poets United. Peace – and don’t forget to floss, Amy

Dentists and Origami

Dentists cling to
ass-slinging phrases:
“Only $3,000,” and
“We prefer implants,” or
“It’s easy, and it’s only $2,700!”

You are entering a world of pain,
paralyzed in their sterile chair,
these hair-raising inestimable estimates
tossed off like freshly folded
origami vampire bats
circling the cubicle,
jugular-bound to bleed you dry

Count the scales on
his alligator shoes
Take notes, the personal pix
of Peruvian vacation with
family, a long row of
perfect pearlies

The iron-clad irony:
We pay,
they play

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

Isadora at Imaginary Garden With Real Toads asked us to use one of our favorite movie lines in a poem… Just saw “The Big Lebowski” for the first time in years, and although it’s irredeemably filled with swearing – haven’t heard that many F words since labor – John Goodman’s line, “You’re entering a world of pain,” seems so appropriate here!

My empty tooth canal is stuffed with clove oil-soaked gauze and it’s still 85 degrees at midnight and I cannot go outside because the humidity is too much for my lungs, like breathing warm pudding. “Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how did you find the play?” Amy