The Green Room
The nurses use it as punishment, threatening it,
pointing to the heavy steel door, massive lock.
My rage continues, my mouth spews, my volume
becomes the norm in every patient, chaotic bliss.
The nurses press buttons under desks, men rush
to silence, contain, still, I am stronger.
“The room awaits” they shout, silencing most patients
I am fury, and wrath, I am justice.
The needle is fat, the liquid is cold,
my rage dies and is replaced with death.
Tan door opens silently, the room is unknown,
the floor is odd, neither solid nor liquid.
My feet explore the rubber, wavy and cold
eyes do not see, hands touch vertical floor.
My screams are absorbed, ears never hearing myself
nose smelling old rubber, skin feels the bounce.
Appointment kept, script in hand, line shortens, nervousness
will they judge, will they condemn, will they understand, no
trained to smile and fill, the white bag passes from plastic to hand,
other shoppers see, they judge, they condemn, they look away.
The label prints small, one pill every day in the morning,
phone checked, must wait, must endure, not time,
sleep is elusive, the pill awaits, all focus is on the pill,
morning comes, still dark, label checked, no time assigned.
Water falls to glass, hand shakes holding, the need is real,
bottle cap yields, the safety film is broken, no return
cotton removed in hopes one pill sticks, no,
shaky hands, the desk and floor meet the pills again.
Securing the future, pill slides into mouth,
the seed watered, the nervousness leaves, the wait
begins, mind assured the pill will fix the pain,
the pill unlocks the genes, then some accepted “side effects.”
11 pm, flopping down,
the air is stale,
the pillow exhales loudly.
Breathing in with expectation
of her smell, rewarded
with sneeze and cough.
My mind makes a
false memory and tells
me she is still here.
Forcing a smile at
my ability to still
believe, knowing I lie.
The air is stale,
her smell is gone.