by which we pacify with euphemism
our planned transgressions,
boundaries shifting convenience
into correct countries

is the language by which we pun on pleasure,
pour into our mouths the here-and-now,
an alphabet of aftertaste sour on our tongues

is the two dead children alive
again for the ten seconds it takes to read
in newsprint the absence of their breath

a mistake of transposition,
a column of patient charts
switched like typos

dread is the language
by which the Downs Syndrome girl,
unnamed but not unwritten,
is not the one aborted
first

disguise is the deed that makes the dead
the correction, that stacks together
the specious: the mis-filed, the not-
chosen, the accidentally-left-
for, inconveniently worded, dead.