My First


The first one stays with you forever.
I thought I was prepared;
I was wrong.
She had stringy, brown hair, medium-length,
Belly filled once again with fluid,
Ashen skin stretched across her swollen body making her thirty-three years seem inadequate,
She scanned the room with glazed eyes yet unable to answer,
Why me?
Beside her, little ones painted memories,
He sat holding her hand in his,
Supportive…until the end.
She had always been so healthy,
What does Cancer have to do with a Pap test?
Each day brought forth more needles, more tests,
Four liters drained this morning, relieving her distension;
It would come back.
How long would she, would I, last?
Fifteen minutes,
she wept for fifteen minutes.
A relief, she was HIV negative;
Her eyes twinkled blue, briefly, not realizing her Cancer would take her sooner than the virus ever could.
One less tragedy to face.
I remember her last day as if it were yesterday.
Her face, twisting,
Her eyes sinking deper, pupils more alert.
She knew.
Her feeble jaw unable to speak, but her eyes told it.
It’s time.
The walls collapsing upon us, filling one by one
Machines roaring to life, as life left her.
Noise rising to thunderous heights, yet all I could hear was her stare,
Those eyes, never easing their gaze from me.
When would it end?
The first one stays with you forever.

Stephanie Meyers, Class of 1999