Called In

It took a minute for her
to process the implications
of me being there —
you don’t just ‘drop by’
the hospital
in Maryland when you live
in Georgia — then she bypassed
joy, went straight
from shock to panic.

Sedation and waiting were
the only options offered;
kidneys failed, ravaged
by chemo and radiation.

She was ‘made comfortable’
for five days, while her last
words echoed through
the silence of the sterile room,

Don’t let me die,
don’t let me die


Filed under Poetry

21 responses to “Called In

  1. oh my goodness, Mark….this so totally pulled me in.

  2. Powerful! Gave me goose bumps..

  3. We’ve all been through this, or something similar – if it’s happening to you right now, I am very sorry.

    Your writing is, as ever, vivid.

  4. you capture the terror well mark and i dunno what to say… it’s so tough

  5. Mark, this is haunting… My mom expected me, as I lived in town, but if Beth had rolled in from Virginia, yeah, the same message. You told this like it is, like everyone has to face at some point. And as much as the loved ones are “prepared” for it, we never are. Thank you for bringing this sad moment to life, because it gives us all something to which we can either relate or notice in preparation… Peace, Amy

  6. Wow. Powerful is definitely the word for this. I got chills.

  7. Oh my, this brought a tear to my eye. A perfect illustration of one of life’s hardest moments.

  8. How well you pen the array of emotions of one at the facing their mortality. poignant & powerful

  9. ugh…heavy man….and i hope she made it through….considering them last words i never know…but i imagine they are glad they made that trip to see her either way….

  10. Very heavy, indeed. Peace & thoughts to you & her, Mark.

  11. Truth is stark here – and rings with the reality we all know. Death of a love one is a bar dropping in time, a change forever, a readjustment for the living and also presumably for the dead. Well said.

  12. oh my, so vividly written and powerful…. and sad

  13. This poem is powerful! and so well written.


  14. Mark, you do bring to light the horrors of watching a loved one suffer. Well done.


  15. it’s so hard watching death carve someone you love up. You captured it well here.

  16. A tough subject. Well written.

  17. It’s never easy. Sensitively captured.

  18. Made me sad and mad-I can’t accept the medical communities’ ignorance which leads to the cause of many people ending their life this way. ….But well expressed scene!

  19. Oh my, such a heartbreaking situation, especially when she is not ready to let go. Very moving.

  20. I’ve seen your work before, I’m sure of it! And the sheer power in this piece is gut wrenching and heart tugging. When Dad was dying he worried about feeding his dog, bringing in the mail and what time the ball game started. He didn’t want to die, but he was ready to die. That made it easier on my sister and I. I will be reading more of you, be assured.

  21. This is a powerful poem. I just lost of friend to cancer and this poem sums up how she felt those last days. Sad by truthful.

Some of what I write is true, some is fiction; most is merely possibility.

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