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Poetry

what a magnificent view

17 July 2018

we’re seeing the same things most
times, except when he gets to sit up
look out the window on his side of the room

I get to sit up every day at a specific time
so I get to use my spine enough before
I don’t have use for it anymore

the things he gets to do on his own
always has to do with the side of the room
I don’t know how to earn sides

I know he would die to be in my place, by the window, to see
strollers, trolleys,
human follies

there was a red-cloaked woman one day,
he said, light drizzling, baby in arms,
she takes the rain for her child,

we take the pain we can, if I sit up,
I get to see something other than the blank ceiling I reason
with every night,

another day he sees a barrage of people
bundling eggs and turnips and sugar pops
and leafy things, yellow fruits,

I will tell him anything if it means he will
listen, I talk myself out of my thoughts,
out of this futility, this indignation,

I sometimes forget people wear things
that are not white on their skin,
I sometimes forget wrinkles exist outside of

these walks of life I have not had the time
to live, nor the eyes to see,
nor the mouths to be

this emergency alarm button I can press
in the middle of the night when I hear him
gasping for breath – I know he is dying

but I didn’t expect it to be me
to be part of a hospital room duo
sometimes we are like room décor,
stale and sober in bolstered realities,
too long to sit up and see anything new
outside the window
I am running out of things to see
I am afraid he will find out

that I should have pressed the button but
I want so damn badly to sit up and look
out the window, if only to know life exists
outside this square sight
and I let him die but I can
remember his crusted sighs,
in between his reporting what he saw,
he had been so sure
I’d never dreamed it could be a perfect lie.

Taking his place,
I sat the first time, eager, in pain,
numerous nurses cautioning me against
curiosity, but all I saw out the window
was a block of red bricks, a wall.

a wall of non-existence,
non-entity, non-fantasy.

a neither monolith.

I think I miss his window.


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