Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Four Hours Later (Day 168)

More than four hours later, we emerge, 
squinting into a July afternoon, absorbing 
its heat into blood, fingers, and toes. 

More than four hours and yet we know 
—is this even possible?—less than 
when we arrived. Did they hear what I said? 
No, the thick summary tells me. What I sensed, 
was true. 

While you read your book and simmered in 
a stew of frustration, boredom, helplessness; 
while the aides arranged their upcoming vacation 
days; while I stared at the walls in a haze 
of pain and killers of pain, a few people 
worked, very slowly, at 

not finding answers, not offering a single comfort, 
not understanding the meaning of “cannot stand 
or walk on it”, not making accurate notations.

When all was said and done, we walked away with 
an assurance that a bone I never suspected was 
broken or dislocated is, in fact, intact.

They told me I needed to lose weight—I am a woman, 
after all—then politely, but soundly, dismissed me. 
And that—believe me—was a skill 
at which they were very practiced, indeed.

(c) 2017, by Hannah Six

Image: A Souvenir, John William Godward, 1920

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