© 2022 Pulse - Voices from the Heart of Medicine, Inc. All rights reserved.
Scott Wilson ~
Take her breath, still her heart, and
clean her body out with a spoon.
Wring her spirit in the river and
place her eyes beside the moon.
Fold up her memories in a dresser and
frame her smile in the sky.
Turn up her laughter in the darkness and
let her freckles start to fly.
Smoke her love
Carl V. Tyler
I knew from last night’s house call that my patient Bessie’s time was near. All day long I’d felt the familiar churning inside, the sickly sweet combination of anticipated dread and anticipated relief. So when the phone rang while I was exercising at home, I wasn’t surprised. I quickly dropped the barbell weights to answer the call before it went to voice mail.
It was Bessie’s daughter, Susan.
Death. A five-letter word. The inevitable conclusion to our accomplishments, dreams, emotions and essence. Feared and ignored by the well, acknowledged and perhaps even welcomed by the ailing.
As physicians we are constantly gambling against this inevitability, playing the odds with our arsenal of diagnostics and therapeutics. Even when the odds against us grow longer, we forge ahead, bidding to prolong life through technology and wonder drugs.
Many times, staring into the tired,