1. Germain, Shanna R.

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Pathologic fractures of the humerus may occur with minimal trauma . . . - Charles L. Phillips, Basic Life Support: Skills Manual


T here are 200 bones in the body, my lover says. He is reading my paramedic textbook. He is lying naked across my bed. I am watching the puzzle pieces of his spine rise and fall.


Pelvis, he says. We have just had sex-I can still smell him on my sheets and between my thighs, can feel the dead skin beneath my nails. I'd tried to take his blood.


Mandible, he says. I watch him speak. I don't care to hear him read but pretend that I do-I am not ready for him to check his watch, pull on his jeans, rise from bed.


Fibula, he says. He tosses me the book, walks into the kitchen. He calls his wife, tells her he'll be home as soon as he can. Tosses me a goodbye from the doorway; doesn't come in.


Humerus, I say. I'm not a bad student. It only took me six weeks to memorize all 200 bones of the body. Other things are harder: who can remember which is the distal end, which is the proximal?