Contents | April 2003
More on poetry from The Atlantic Monthly.
The Atlantic Monthly | April 2003
Hear the author read this poem (in RealAudio)
Portrait of the Author After X-Ray
by Jillian Weise
The radiologist forgot to place the shield
across the child's ovaries.
The risks are minimal they say, one
in a million, one in ten thousand.
The lead-rubber hand, somehow protective,
positioned over could-be freckles, fingers.
The child didn't notice until after the picture
was taken. Furious, cheated, she refused
to get dressed, stalked into the radiology
waiting room bare-assed and brazen
until her mother tackled her and begged
her to stop screaming.
Jillian Weise is the Fred Chappell Fellow at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She recently won the Academy of American Poets John McKay Shaw Award.
Copyright © 2003 by The Atlantic Monthly Group. All rights reserved.
The Atlantic Monthly; April 2003; Portrait of the Author After X-Ray; Volume 291, No. 3; 78.