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Writing Down The Bones

July 30, 2009

in our continued look at how people interpret and utilize the term “poetic” we bring you this report on the poetry of the skeleton from NPR.

Where I see a lump on a bone, they see a broken wrist that healed with time, but not quite in the correct orientation. They know it would have caused the gorilla to walk with a slight limp on the right side and to put most of its weight on the other arm, which, by the way, explains why that other arm is so much larger. Once they really get going on a skeleton, they reach a sort of rhythmic cadence. Terms like “osteochondritis dissecans,” “diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis” and (my favorite) “ankylosing spondylitis” may have no meaning to me, but the terms make a sort of poetry of pathology.



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