An Anthology of Poetry and Medicine


by Lane Falcon

It takes two nurses to push the recliner
closer to your silver crib on the side
where the ventilator feeds breath after
copied breath into your lungs and lift you,
one holding the six-foot plastic oxygen
limb, the other places you in the spindly
cradle of my arms. This is how I imagine
I come back into myself, your skin
chafed by hospital air, angry-red,
your head the size of a crochet ball
balanced on the crook of my elbow.
So many things wrong with me implode
in your eyes, your mouth opens to emit
a cry I can’t hear. You arrive in a mold
too small to hold this cosmic injury,
and look at me to meet you, to bleed.

first published in Medical Literary Messenger


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