Mehrnoosh Torbatnejad

I sliced my right thumb, 
a perfect line
from behind the nail arc
to the center of the print
The silver point of the knife
bored with spears and sprigs
sought the pink meat
behind my skin, 

made flaps of the flesh
like petals of an O’Keeffe flower, 
gathered rose drops
on the spike of its body
that I quickly covered
with paper towels and a rubber- 
band borrowed from stalks
of broccoli

I had to finish cutting potatoes
into orange cubes, melt butter
and prepare dinner, though
lime juice and salt sprinkles

humbled the makeshift dressing, 
and I screamed a little, 
and again when you held up
my finger to the light
A canyon was made
from the gash over the years, 
platelets that rushed to the wound
every morning undid their doing
I always kept a Band-Aid
in my wallet, and one Sunday
in the park, a mother hurried
to her boy’s cry and skinned knee
I gave her the adhesive, 
his tears paused, 
she took the gift and
healed what had been ripped
My thumb will reopen, 
what a lucky thing
about a cut always too fresh: 
it does not scar 

Author's Commentary: I always keep a Band-Aid in my wallet, but I never end up using it for myself. This piece provides the backstory behind why that is always the case. 

I was born and raised in New York.  My poetry has appeared in The Missing Slate, Passages North, HEArt Journal Online, Pinch Journal, and is forthcoming in Natural Bridge and Painted Bride Quarterly. I am a 2016 Best of the Net nominee. I currently live in New York and practice matrimonial law.