Tuesday, August 28, 2012

FOR FRIEND, DYING

This morning is 9/10ths regret,
For a man I know is dying of cancer,
His cells doing what his mind
Should do –  the mathematics of life,
With quiet efficiency. Nurses will soon set
Their watches by him, but find
Minutes & hours sadly lacking.
Their fingers are 10 slender needles.
 
This day has suns only he can see,
A man now so frail he casts no shadows.
Many lives away, his friends wait,
Who visualize his model-like gait
Sloping side to side under the windows
Of light he cannot see, his  humor
Sitting shyly on the integral-laden air.
His pulse is yesterday’s flowers.

If this man’s soul had cells,
Would they have fallen, broken
With such lethal joy? I have tried
To find an answer, but the doctors tell
Me nothing – his sodden arteries
Float from room to room, place to place.
I leave him through the back door, but the grass
Is so sharp, it is painful to step down.