2014 Featured Poetry

 

Late Night Thoughts in the Hospital by Julie Cyr

2014 Winner "Best of Poetry"

 

 

When you're dying it's hard to tell
which organ is saying good bye first,
the body hanging up
it's closed for service sign.
Some organs you can live without,
but those aren't usually the first to go.
Take the appendix, the last thought,
really an unorgan, a question mark in the gut.
The spleen you can live without.
Mine is gone, incinerated as medical waste,
released as ashes into the atmosphere.
We need the intestines' necessary tubing,
(the worms go in, the worms go out.)
The liver's a filter for all things bad,
judging if I drank too much in this life.
The heart, the most vital of all,
the involuntary muscle of love.
It pumps to all distances
and contains the seat of the soul.
Without it, you cannot live
and you cannot feel what it means
to be human.
I'm beginning to sense the end
of being human, the start
of decomposition, breaking down
into bits. The body going back
to the earth, the place where I began.
The earth where I have lived and laughed.
Death usually isn't a laughing matter,
but go ahead and guffaw.
Have an Irish wake with me
laid out on the table.
Tell stories and drink your pints.
Then lower me down into the dirt
next to those who have gone before.
We'll share insects and roots.
The old maple will weave
its way through us
and we'll be together again,
our blood flowing as sap.
The grandchildren will climb up
and feel the essence of our clan
and dance a jig on our branches.