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every once in a while
stan asks me to hold his phone
and watch his unit
while he attends a prayer service
in the hospital chapel
it's cool most of the time
but come on stan
do i ask you to hold the phone
while i smoke a bone with satan?
"try a few more," i encourage
i’m doing a breathing exercise
with a young multiple GSW
"you ain’t no doctor
and i’ll stop when i wanna ******* stop"
an amiable attitude
directly correlated
with multiple GSW
the frustrations of biff are a technicolor epic
his bottomless thirst to be coronated king
of film, music, literature, performance
when will the world recognize genius?
reward genius?
worship genius?
******* genius?
he’s the id for all us artsy types
last week i had to put down my little cat peppy
after nineteen weird years of love
sadly now i can leave my boots in the hall
knowing she won’t *** on them
sadly we’re all born to play supporting roles
but the prisoner by subtraction
is free to imagine anything
he can make you and me zombie slaves
concubines to his fantasy
he has that right; it’s kosher
while we wear chains of responsibility
shackled to the civilities of liberty
exercising our right to spend money
on **** we don’t need
he can steal it all
he can dream us to death
i could give him ten breathing treatments
he’s still 84 years old
struggling to breathe at 4:45 in the morning
i could give him twenty treatments
he still has CHF
jamming the right chamber of his heart
flooding his lungs
he’s not drowning in it, not yet
but every breath is a squat ******
i sit with him at 4:45 in the morning
administering useless medicine
watching ice truckers, shooting the ****
it’s not lasix, which is what he needs to flush the fluid
but i’m good company and so is he
and that will have to be therapy enough
at 4:45 in the morning
when i was ten years old and we were moving
i recall those sessions with the real estate agent
i was suffering and she was happy
i was watching my world disintegrate
leaving my friends, my school, my home
my sister and i would never feel comfortable again
and this real estate woman was having a ball
enjoying the transaction, making a few bucks
digging life
i remember wishing we could make an even switch
i could be her, happy and whole
she could be me, losing so much

now i work in a hospital
and as i treat the weak, wheezing and dying
spending time with them and their families
and their desperation, resignation and grief
while for me it’s just another workday
punctuated with lunch and coffee
i see they too wish for an even switch
they’d leave me languishing in the bed or waiting room
while they hop on my bike listening to the beastie boys
on their blissful way back home
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