When something is a fake of the real thing, adrift, untethered, subject to the winds, we say it is en carton, made of cardboard. This week we woke up everyday a little late and laughed that we were cardboard poets, for example: writing like we were constantly warming up for a game we'd never play. When my roommate told me she tried to die at 17, all I could do was remember I had such flimsy reasons for staying alive then. My anchor to the world en carton: good grades, a girlfriend, and a hike in the Vosges. I am fortunate my tethers evolved at the same pace that they became obsolete, but it's easy to imagine a glitch in that machine. When she woke up from what she calls a non-accident, she was more upset that they shaved her head than about having lost a hand. Today she says, I have one hand in a way that makes you wonder how someone could possibly end up with two, as if God had forgotten, and then remembered, that She only ever meant to give us the hand with which She moulds.
-- Camille Blanc is a poet and translator from Paris, France. Within the translation collective Connexion Limitée, Camille aims to make poetry originally published in the US accessible to French-speaking audiences. Camille also translates drug policy research and works to defend drug users' rights as part of a national harm reduction association.