Ophthalmology in B Minor – Amy McGinn

out of focus and blurred at the edges

Amy is a 20 year old poet and animal lover. She is currently in her third year of university where she is studying for her Wildlife Conservation degree. She has been published in The Marsden Poetry Village anthology, Canterbury Poet of the Year, as well as being shortlisted/longlisted for several other prizes. Her work has been described as innovating, compelling, brave, and she aims to pursue this in her future writing.

Ophthalmology in B Minor

vision problem #1: nearsightedness;

at the foot of the stairwell, the future — out of focus and blurred at the edges — is marred by astigmatism. something like threat lies belly-up in the background, throat brazenly splayed on the asphalt. fingers cut off and hung up to drain. tongue a metaphor for tumescence. blood a metaphor for destruction.

vision problem #2: farsightedness;

this angle softens the outline of your cuspids, cushions the flagrancy of your features. this is the part where, for once, i’m not attracted to rot; where decay isn’t a tired buoy slogging through my blood like a stubborn dog.

vision problem #3: tunnel vision;

the needle repositioned on the record, but still catching on guilt in every groove. the sickness threaded through the bars of a birdcage, brain short-circuited by circumstance. my veins: rivers blocked with contagion and carnage — more about bad timing than bad luck. 

vision problem #4: blindness;

flying above the gossamer, the ruby-breasted bird swipes at something that doesn’t belong to him. he becomes something unholy in his neolithic need for hegemony. retaliation excised from his prize like wet cement between two lips. 

vision correction: keratomileusis;

it feels like this: the poisoned fruit between my teeth, but no tongue to spit it out with; the chick falling from the nest, its wings tucked into its body. this is what it takes to taste anything other than burnt. this is what it takes to understand that softness isn’t the same as surrender.

Amy McGinn

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