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Sutherland Springs

Simin G. Roward ~

What I remember most about that day
is the silence in your eyes
when they rushed you in and how you
only started crying
when the nurse tried to put in an IV
as if the holes made in your body by the
bullets of an automatic rifle
aimed at you at church
and the memory of your mother
dying in the pew
were a pain of a different level
that your beautiful five-year-old heart couldn’t contain
and it took the poke of a small needle for you to
begin to feel human again
and I’m sorry. I’m so sorry we couldn’t save you all

About the poet:

Simin G. Roward is a general-surgery resident at the University of Texas at Austin Dell Seton Medical Center. She attended the University of Arizona College of Medicine, where she took advantage of the curriculum’s many creative-writing opportunities and contributed to the school’s literary magazine.

About the poem:

“This poem is based on my experience as a surgery intern working in the trauma pit when the pediatric victims of the Sutherland Springs shooting were brought to University Hospital in San Antonio. Despite the extremely well coordinated efforts of the faculty and staff, the care of pediatric trauma patients is very challenging, and each patient left a lasting impression on me.”

Poetry editors:

Johanna Shapiro and Judy Schaefer