Ashley Shew

forearm crutches

(listen to the poem, read by the author)

Put your arms thru these cuffs
Hold on and plant the tips of these sticks
Just ahead of you
Fling your body up off the ground and forward
Flying on stick
Land your one foot down
You only have one foot on the ground, ever
Fling yourself on these sticks again
Now you’re the worm of Busytown
But your body makes sense in this motion
And you are not a cartoon

Back to Top of Page | Back to Poetry | Back to Volume 15, Issue 4 – Winter 2021

About the Author

Ashley Shew is an associate professor in the Department of Science, Technology, and Society at Virginia Tech. She usually writes things-other-than-poems in the academic areas of philosophy of technology, animal studies, disability studies, and emerging technologies. Her current research is around the stories disabled people tell about technology that differ from typical societal narratives. She is currently working on a book called Technoableism and working with a team of student researchers on a textbook of community and teaching materials called Technology & Disability. Her website is