Jan/Feb 2022 • Vol. XLIV No. 1 PoetryJanuary 11, 2022 |

The Infrared Camera

A MILLION BRIGHT LIGHTS Vasa is affected by your body heat, your breath and your clothing, which may be wet from rain. The museum receives a million visitors annually. The ship hall accommodates at most 1,500 people at any one time. A person gives off approximately 75 watts of heat. The display uses a heat camera to show how warm you are. Too warm. I know already. But the camera insists on looking, and the screen on making me look: there, that glowing yellow blur moving warily, helplessly closer, is me. The parts that are bare—my hands my calves, the back of my neck—are even hotter: red. We are at the bottom. The darkest part of the museum, where the keel withdraws into private black-shadowed blackness, the ship’s underside, the hidden part it rests on. All the times when my heat has been too much. Loving and scared I might be doing damage. Loving and told I’m not the only one who loves my mother and my father, my sister, a man. The hand held up to stop me. The camera th

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The Other Joan

By Joan Wickersham

A MILLION BRIGHT LIGHTS Vasa is affected by your body heat, your breath and your clothing, which may be wet from rain. The museum receives a million visitors annually. The […]

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