Tendons, vessels, muscle, bone-
little more than its sum, alone.
Without life, alone.
A heart upon your fingers,
fibers smooth, firmness lingers.
A pump sleeps, alone.
Nerves, severed and denuded,
shimmering, taut, function diluted.
Pain without feeling, alone.
A lung, delicate sponge, blackened,
absorbs an essence, greyed, maddened.
Vacant sacs, stale breaths, alone.
The cerebrum, split, its valleys and mounds,
embodies a soul, full, without bounds.
My lifeless being is nothing alone.
Rivulets of sorrow meandering
down tear-stained skin.
“Keep her comfortable
until it’s time.”
of eternal reminder within.
through the threshold
into the chill,
of realization emerge.
the molting trees,
their arid leaves
embellishing her hair
like fragments of
As if they weep for her.
As if even the ambiances
of ages past are beseeching
her not to leave.
Soon arrives the Foehn,
holding you within
its warm embrace.
whispering lines of truth,
sculpt a bittersweet tune
as they herald
the evening’s arrival.
by lyrics of singing ivy,
her expression calms,
your fears dissolve.
Consoled by a draft possessive,
you cradle her
through the darkness
and follow her
toward the seraph’s call
into the fold of
We did it. We took it out.
Slowly, the oxygen saturation dropped.
Gradually, the alarms sounded.
Insisting. Imploring us to do something.
We turned them off.
Made him comfortable.
But we knew we couldn’t hide the truth.
We were letting him suffocate.
~ ~ ~
A lucid man.
A failing lung. A decision made.
A breathing tube placed—just temporarily—
until the lungs healed.
Until they got stronger. Until he got stronger.
But I saw the regret the moment it was inserted.
Nevertheless. We agreed to give it a chance.
But days passed. Then weeks.
Being alert, he communicated with us well.
Through his writing, I got to know him well.
His adventures. His best memory. His regrets in life.
He was a good man.
But a man who never desired to live like this.
While the family disputed on what course of action to take next,
he remained calm and unwavering.
“Please let me go.” was what he would say.
Then finally the moment came.
The time to say goodbye.
~ ~ ~
That day, I let myself weep during rounds.
In front of a crowd of stoic faces.
To weep over a friend.
To weep over a human being.
Over his courage.
An impossible decision.
The loss of a life.
Because I didn’t want to do it. But I did.
I let go.
• • •
“To Let Go” – the poem