My Doctors


Back then, I had just one, like others do.
“Say ah – good girl!”, look in my ears, weigh me,
breathe in and out, sometimes a shot or two,,
“See you next year.  Try to eat healthily.”
When I was ten, my pee turned red.  I met
the nice Nephrologist who said pills would
take care of me.  Every month, I had to get
some blood drawn out. But things were looking good.
Well, not for too long, so we had to find
the Transplant Surgeon, who said the answer
was father’s kidney.  And then, things were fine…
except some drugs whose side effect was cancer.
      “Cancers in kids are very sensitive.
      It’s very likely she’s going to live.”
Oncologist confirmed the tumors which
some chemo shrank.  To me it felt like mud
was going through my brain.  Another hitch
was diarrhea/vomiting made of blood.
A Gastroenterologist was told
to scope my stomach.  Guess the cancer tore
me open as it was dying. I hold
my mother’s hand as I meet a few more…
To take care of my airway – ENT
trying to zap tumors – Rad.  Oncologist
infected line – Specialist in ID
watching things get worse – an Intensivist.
       “There’s been some problems, but now you’re okay.
       It looks like you’ll go home now, any day.”
Sometimes they ask about what classmates said
on all those cards that are hung on the wall.
Before, they used to talk around my bed.
But now, their discussions occur in the hall.
The last one came when tears dropped from my eye.
A Shrink – she let me talk a lot.  Still,
I couldn’t tell her I’m afraid to die…
My mom was sitting on the windowsill.
Each day by day, these friends of mine come by,
a lot of docs for a girl who’s thirteen.
They force a clean smile, but their eyes don’t lie
as they peruse the numbers on that screen.
       Each hour by hour, I reach and blindly grope.
       There is a better place tahn this, I hope.

Henry Lee, Class of 1999