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Pain and a Pen, Part 4: Barbed-wire Sunset

15 Oct

This is the fourth in a series of poems written at my Grandma’s dying bedside. Barbed Wire lives in frustration and, almost, resentment toward the universe for what seemed like an unnecessary dragging on of my Grandmother’s suffering. It was written late at night, just a couple hours before she died. She appeared to be totally unconscious by now, but still responded with a squeeze of the hand when people would talk to her or a new hand would hold hers.

She was on regular doses of morphine to control her pain, but the almost constant quiet, agonizing moans and clinching of her entire body told us it wasn’t doing the trick. Her blood oxygen saturation had dipped below 65%, and her breaths had fallen to 4 or 5 per minute for several hours. I was sad, helpless and begging her tired body to let go. We had all said our final goodbyes, prayed together around her, and had a good hard cry together as a family. And the agony drug on for her, though we knew th end was very near.

Barbed-wire Sunset

soft darkness,
warm chills,
a bead runs down my face
love will wipe my brow.

parched lips and sunken eyes
no voice left of mine,
turn me here to there
this stubborn stregnth of ox.

another dose
to dull the pain,
to find for me some rest.

each breath, a thousand pounds
upon my chest,
weight of this mortal life
I will to drop behind.

furrowed brow
determined to break the armor
of this resilient vessel,
death prevail in time.

who hears my cry
and opens now the gate?
who holds my hand
hour upon hour?

I go into the next
foggy and unknown
and beautiful.

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Posted by on October 15, 2009 in Family, Love, poetry, writing

 

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