The Hospital Room

Hannah Park '23

i walk into your room to see you
your blue dress just as clean as always
a smile and a wave tell me I am welcome
in this space filled with whispers of ghosts
and the constant hum subsides as my ears
grow accustomed to the not-quite-silence
i don’t glance around
because i’ve been here too many times
all the monitors that tell me what i already know
what is most important:
that your heart is still beating
and so i sit down
and the words come out, about my day and my life
never once does a sentence end with a question mark
because one more would be three dozen too many
that we don’t have the answers to
and the tubes in your arm that ache
when you shift to give me a hug goodbye
are a reminder of the expiration date
that God has pasted on each of us
and you tell me
“the small victories are victories too”
and i know it’s true
but i don’t believe you
because within these white walls
truth is science
and hope is improbable, wishful speculation