Fruitless?

 

It was a sunshine-bright morning
and my fifty-fourth birthday.

Saturday

a day when 

we were alone

in the hospital lobby .


The surgeon came in with
his coffee cup and friendly manner,
a fit and kind man
about my age.

We followed him through
a labyrinth of back doors
to the exam room.
There was no need
to shut the door
as no one else
was in the building
to hear.
To hear the words.

I thought I was past
shock and surprise
but his words
wrapped around
my throat like
cold hands
squeezing:

“The tumor is
cantaloupe-size.”

And these past months–
the months of  special

treatments
diet
focused rest
mediation prayer
treatments of herbs,  oils–
Seemingly all for naught
the denials of pleasure
fruitless.

My sweetheart still

fights.

Fruitless–
with a
cantaloupe
cancer.

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