Saturday, 19 March 2016

Oncology Ward (and Revelation 21:4)

Medicating cocktails seep through circling tubes
dulling the suffocating pain.
Oxygen saturation shows steady.
Expensive equipment signals
discouraging statistics.

The industrial white sheets
and meager hospital blanket
defies any sense of homeliness.
Impersonal clinical uniformity
adds weight to despair.

So she watches the last few days of her life,
not yet nearly half way through,
time out
to a blistering crescendo
of familial grief
and personal anguish.

She will not see her daughter wed,
or her sons in the strength of their adult years.
Robbed of life by the curse that is cancer,
that hateful disease that shows no mercy,
in whatever form it comes.

The doctors and nurses have done their best
and they grieve in their own quiet way,
apart from the patients
with whom they must remain strong and all knowing.

Her family is allowed space and time
to say goodbye

before she is wheeled from the ward
to make room for another.

And God will wipe away
every tear from their eyes;
there shall be no more death,
nor sorrow, nor crying.
There shall be no more pain,
for the former things have passed away.

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