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I put the tube to my lips Breathing slowly I watched the mist “Back in five minutes” said the nurse Alone now, I suddenly Flashed back nearly three years A mere three months sober With shaking hand He put the nebulizer to his lips Breathing slowly as I watched the mist I looked at my father Once a towering mountain, Now frail and dying He lay back And closed his eyes Why was I the one alone with him? “I’m glad I quit drinking.” I said It sounded hollow, he did not respond Did I expect different? Some kind of connection? Suddenly lonesome I wandered out to the desk I overheard the doctor talking to a nurse “He’s a very sick man.” I felt dead. Somehow I said, “He’s signed a No Extraordinary Care clause.” The doctor’s eyes met mine and held them He turned to the nurse, “Make him comfortable.” I stood there empty and alone wondering, Is this why I got sober? How ironic to be the last one he saw Out of all ten, the one he liked least The nebulizer ran out The nurse looked concerned as she entered “Are you okay?” I smiled weakly, “Yes, I’ve been crying”
This was formerly titled Pneumonia which in retrospect was a lousy title! Thanks to all who helped me out with that!
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