By Marianne Boruch

It seems so—         
I don’t know.  It seems   
has never happened in here.   
No smoke, no   
dizzy flaring except   
in the chapel for a quarter.   
before burning out.   
                            And in this room   
where we wait, I see   
them pass, the surgical folk—     
nurses, doctors, the guy who hangs up   
the blood drop—ready for lunch,   
their scrubs still starched into wrinkles,   
a cheerful green or pale blue,   
and the end of a joke, something   
about a man who thought he could be—   
what?  I lose it   
in their brief laughter.

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