the urban body is dependent.

by Carrie Chappell

the urban body is dependent. is dependent on the needs of others. is a needy body. is a body next to other bodies. is an equal body, is another body. the urban body is the needs of others nextdoor to the needs of others nextdoor to the needs of others. it is the needs of others to be answered, the need to be real. the urban body is the human body. is the human body in a real urban body. the neighbor’s body is human and real. and by virtue of being next to yours, and next to your bakery, and next to your child’s scooter, and next to your cousin’s local coffee shop, and next to your babysitter’s laundromat is really urban. and therefore, also, laïc. therefore, accepting. therefore, indifferent.
               the cigarette smoke trailing into your home is puffed really from the mouth and lungs of a real body having its real needs. thus, you must live this. this being one real body’s answer. the urban body is a real body with real conditions. for instance, the urban body really needs to hear others to think it can recognize silence. it really needs to see others to think it can know the bad choices of others. it needs the touch of others, the caress of others to leave them numb and able to live in the urban body next to other urban bodies. this is the dependency of the urban body: it needs others, it really, really needs others. the urban body needs others to be really, really nobody.


[Carrie Chappell is originally from Birmingham, Alabama. Some of her poetry has appeared in AnastamosBlue Mesa ReviewCALAMITYCimarron ReviewCream City ReviewFORTH MagazineHarpur PalateJukedPittsburgh Poetry Review, and The Volta. Her book essays have been published in The CollagistDiagramFANZINEThe Iowa ReviewXavier Review, and Buried Letter Press. Currently, she lives, writes, and teaches in Paris, France.]