By Michael Morrell

She walks as if favoring a sore foot
and her one hand can’t distinguish
coins from stones. Mostly, she imagines,
no one knows. At last week’s dance, a boy
with sleek hair kissed her in the corner.
Tonight, her youth group is doing a yearly
good deed. Leaning on a wall, she watches
guests crowd the gymnasium in wheelchairs.
Skewed legs wrack with sudden currents.
Arms lay folded and stiff like cooked wings.
Her friends hold the twisted hands in their own
then sway, grace among the wheels. She’ll choose
a partner among the palsied strangers
when there’s a song she can get lost in.
It will be like dancing with her secret self.

Who wouldn’t want to pass? Readers, no doubt sympathize with her. At the same time, what Gritz recognizes is that her actions are a disavowal, a standing apart and not wanting to associate with those who have no choice to accept such a disability identity. What is the right thing to do?

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