Tuesday, April 5, 2011


They got the news on one of those late hot Julys
The whole family there in plush icy offices
Smiling with teeth and ten staring skeleton eyes
Watching the door for the coming coat of white
Who came in films under an arm
and said something was not quite right
Smiling as though a family he was not about to rip assunder with harm
A simple error, said he, syllables beyond their wildest belief
pierced the thick shield of ragged collective incipient grief
It happens - just a block in a bile duct the endoscopy clear
No pancreatic cancer here!
As all in concert felt in that icy room the heat thaw through their fear
Mother to son, brother to sister
all to the father/husband center stage sitting a thrust upon starring role mister
Center stage black hair gleam against his barely lined face
yellowed, graying as eggs left too long to age

The air stopped,
each particle
between tears
and cheers
and then together
they all
got goofy -

Six footed brother pointed a toe
and piroutted like a ballet - Why? To this day no one did know
Daughter circle shimmied round her father's chair, kicked up her heel
and pinched herself again and again, pinched herself real

In that plush office they shouted up to the heavens beyond the ceiling did they call
"That folks is all! That folks is all!"
Laughed, and shouted correctly this time again
"Tha...Tha... Tha... THAT'S ALL!"
Then helped their reprieved guy to his feet
shook the docs hand, yes it had been their pleasure to meet
Jabbed the elevator button and giggling quietly falling into one another
Once alone inside as when he was ten fart noises made the attorney brother
Alone together the still until then mother
stuck her tongue out - and they all stuck out their tongues grinning one after the other
So when the doors did open they were flushed and colored high
And stricken beyond despair to see
the having-run-down-six-floors to catch them doctor
waiting there
this time the correct films under his arm
death in hand, tear in steel granite eyes did he bear

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