Off the Shelf, Poetry Thursdays
Leave a comment


The burning taste
of acid in the throat
is a warning.

The reminder that
you are a volcano
under the rockslide

of your chest.
The stomach
cannot always tell

when to stop chewing,
where the food stops
and the body begins

between self and other.
We get hurt this way,
in the churning.

To see ourselves
where we are not,
like a trick mirror.

A magician sawing
through open belly,
back-and-forth illusion

to draw away the eyes
and misplace them
from the truth.

The stomach does not know
when it is eroding,
consuming itself alive.

Poetry Thursdays is an initiative that highlights poems by medical students and physicians. If you are interested in contributing or would like to learn more, please contact our editors.


Steven Duncan (5 Posts)

Medical Student Editor and Contributing Writer

UT Southwestern Medical School

Steven is a third-year medical student at UT Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, Texas (Class of 2022). In 2018, he graduated from Brigham Young University with a Bachelor of Science in microbiology and Russian. He enjoys eating curry, writing poetry, and hiking in his free time. In the future, he would like to pursue a career in primary care and global health.