Loss

walked with you in an ALS rally
after I had locked my keys in my car

saw you a few times
after they told me you were sick

you looked fine
you looked good

I couldn't see anything wrong with you

*

finally, I would call you
ask if you could still drive a car

and I invited you to visit me
so we could spend some time together

and you would say, why
so I'd have a new tv to watch for a while

I didn't want this to happen to you,
I swear

your family watch lupus take a loved one
and now ALS consumes you

your mind is just fine
that's what the doctors tell me

it's just that your nervous system
is breaking you down cellularly

and your crystal clear, sharp mind
has to stand by and watch yourself fall apart

I know this is rare
but it's progressive, degenerative, fatal

and watching you go through this
increasing and spreading muscular weakness

as you live through your days now
I imagine hearing your heartbeat

like the flapping of hummingbird wings
under water

I know I'm not the one suffering
but I am

*

I know I've lived through hell
but it's not fair that I survived

just to watch this happen to you

*

went to a funeral today
and saw you there

wheelchair bound, slurred speech
thin as a rail

but still smiling when you saw me
and I had to smile and small talk with you

with you, who could barely speak
and I had to act like everything was okay

your friend held your cigarette outside with you
put the cigarette to your lips

so you could inhale, then he pulled it away
to wait for your next breath

*

I couldn't stay at the funeral too long
today I had seen too much death

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Wednesday, May 4, 2011 - 14:34

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ccandd96

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