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“A Visit to Ezra Pound in St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, 1948,” by John Berryman

He sank down and back then, buttoning a shirt he had thrust on, arranging objects from his pockets on the windowsill beside him, and began to eat a roll, after offering me one. Later when he went away to get some British illustrated papers about the removal of Yeats’s body to Ireland to show me, he brought back bananas, was very surprised when I didn’t want one, and rapidly ate both.

“Purgatory,” by Michael O’Rourke

When they arrive I’ve crawled my way to the bathroom, peeled off my underwear, and, with the strength of a 155-pound Hercules who by now has lost half the blood in his body, heaved myself into the bathtub in an attempt to clean up.