vanilla ice cream
“what do you think?”
your wide eyes an azure blue glazed with the reflection of my surprise and, the essence of your desperate anticipation, writhing, behind your conjunctival injection. as your head swivels from your doctor to me. and you haven’t eaten in seven days. and I just had chicken for lunch. surely, there must be another medical student behind me, one more competent more experienced more eloquent, in the verbalization of the pragmatism that will be your suffering.
if...I could only hold you...
and in our brief time of conjoined epithelium the sincere totality of my longing for your reprieve could seep, as a balm, between desmosomes into the deepest recesses of your craving.
when late-stage squamous cell carcinoma leeches, within your oropharynx and has metastasized to your cervical nodes so your airway is tenuous therefore you’re at high risk for aspiration -but your only plea is vanilla ice cream.
and all I can recommend is NPO.