I want the world to stop spinning for a dying patient
I want the world to stop spinning for a dying patient.
Tell the colds and the stomach aches to go home.
They will get better anyway.
I had to tell someone they had cancer.
Too much of it to be cured.
And now I have twenty more patients to see.
They are all fine.
But I can’t tell them that.
They look to me to cure the price we pay for living.
Maybe I can. Maybe I can’t.
But surely I won’t be able to help the one who needs it most.
I push her image away.
I put on a smile for the others.
“How are you today?” I ask,
And wait for the litany of complaints,
Dutifully typing them into my laptop.
Write prescriptions. Check the labs.
Click, click, click.
I have glimpsed death only to turn away and stare at a computer screen.
But death will not be clicked away.