“Shit, bang and away we go.”
Would be Papa’s words.
If he were still here, of course.
Beyond spirit, wool sweaters, handkerchiefs.
Which is the bell, and which is the diaphragm, again?
Castell, Ortolani, Babinski: remind me please.
It’s time to put to practice years of book-ness.
Be responsible, stand up straight, know stuff.
Gulp. Swallow. Breathe.
Then I remember you, dear patient, teacher, partner.
Tell me your story,
The narrative, a journey,
Let me listen, to words, to body,
A pulsing soul beneath skin.
To your wrinkles, your cries.
As much as troponins, murmurs, penicillin doses.
It’s an art, this medicine,
As much as knowledge accumulated.
Sanity, humanity: my goals for the year,
To think outside hospital walls. Corners and boxes.
To listen gently, remain curious and present.
To you, and to me, we’re a team after all.
Ignorance, sleep deprivation, loss of control,
Will greet me in time, knock at my door.
I’ll say again, I’m human, like you.
And try my best to “be” with it all.
I say all this. This mindfulness and embracing stuff,
Sounds simple, let’s do it – forge straight ahead.
But lost in thought, I just missed my turn,
Peddled right by the hospital grounds.
On day one, though riding in sun, already in fog.
Lost in thought, about well, I don’t even know.
Of text books, or schedules, or my need for comfortable shoes,
Ones with good soles, no heels, maybe with a sheen.
Trying to recall shoes of the residents I’d seen.
No point. Grey or black, and oh – blister free.
On sale, preferred. No exorbitant fee.
I’ll shop after tomorrow, when I’m a bit more free.
But I should get studying,
Castell, Ortolani, Babinki aren’t replying my text.
I’m human remember, and you, so are you.
Together, “shit, bang and away we”, yes “we” will go.
We’ll walk, we’ll wheel, or breathe through it together.
And I will backtrack, try again,
I know I’ll find the right turn.