It is an abhorrent thing, this incarceration of your vulnerability,
profoundly cruel in the way you were beaten
to your knees, blithely unaware it was a battle lost
for your health and wellbeing. It was dreadful to witness
your vigour evaporate, sapped by a merciless agent
of discontinuity, sold into the slavery of a sickness
that debilitates your will from within.
I am shocked, too, at my smallness in the face of it,
cowed by the enormity beyond, which threatens
the core of our being as one. And seeing you pale
and traumatised in a hospital bed, whispering
in a tiny, distant voice, the fire in your eyes a flicker
where it blazed before,
I am unashamedly terrified.
And yet you inspire me with your selflessness;
though sorely ill you strive to ease my ragged sense
of right and wrong which leaves me devastated.
But I can think clearly, it is me who should be
abed in the hospital ward instead of you. It is I
who should shield you from the pain and uncertainty.
Truly, I should be suffering there instead of you.
As it is I fear the melancholy of this empty house
which echoes with the effervescent lives we lived
before this cursed disease arrived to blight
our fragile happiness. As it is I fear the worst
in every living moment, hoping for reprieve,
fearing for my hope, and caring for you such
my aching heart should burst.
© I.D. Carswell
Peachester May, 2005
(Ivan Donn Carswell)
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Based on Keywords: witness, clearly, sold, echoes, dreadful, whispering, sickness, core, cursed, arrived, shield