Gris-Gris, an online journal of literature, culture & the arts

Morgellons Syndrome

by Ann Keniston


The afflicted body itches, then one’s fingers must pull out


the series of narrow fibers

lodged in the skin


to be saved in a small container, a matchbox maybe


evidence of the frailty of all defenses, emblem

of the need to join

with other sufferers

though the doctors deny it


or else Morgellons is delusional parasitosis, transmitted

by Internet, an obsessional

aversion to permeability or touch


though from the body’s leavings

one can always devise

a system, rationale


locate a proper name


despite the lag, the infelicity


as in simultaneous translation

the errors are perceptible only

to those who speak both languages.