portion of the artwork for Anthony R. Cordello's poetry

Diagnostics
Anthony R. Cordello

I thought it was another recurring dream
until I found the syringe cap under the bed
and then the punctures in the vein under
my tongue. I needed technical support—
the number was on the website.

Unlocking my phone I found that
something had changed the wallpaper
from a tropical beach to a beaming
green router fed by a tube of blood.

Something texted the picture, filtered
through contrasts, crowned with dog ears,
to every single person in my contact list.
No one had responded yet.

I deleted every text and plugged in
the wrong password until the screen
locked then I cracked it open with the
butt of the emergency flashlight then
gathered the remains in a ziplock I
labeled “Danger/Peligro” and buried
in the backyard ivy.

They still returned that night, diving
into my bedroom with strings of
belkins and 5Gs above their heads.
With needles and vials they removed
enough of my blood to send me into a
dreamless sleep.

I spent the morning drinking pints of
orange juice and sketching plans for
survival like an igloo of filing cabinets
and microwaves that I would never
have time to make.


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FRiGG: A Magazine of Fiction and Poetry | Issue 53 | Spring/Summer 2019