by Michael Morris
I’m waiting for my wife
who is getting lab work done
putting blood and urine in tiny
sterile containers, chatting with
the affable nurse, and the warmly stern
doctor who will give her news,
prescriptions and instructions I will
hear about as we drive home.
Two old women talk about directions,
how to get to a place one feels
should be simple to trace
after years of living, years
of working in and for places.
A few chairs to the right
a man with a shiny bald head
clean glasses and new tennis shoes
sits behind his walking frame. A woman
with a red dot on her forehead and
another smaller one between
her eyebrows, comes out of a door
I didn’t realize was there
and sits next to the waiting
walker, speaks to him in Farsi
then is silent like a grandmother
looking for visitors she does not expect.
Others sit quietly
reading magazines until they
realize how uncomfortable they are.
Some read over forms
they were told to give to the nurse
when called. They scan through
boxes checked with their ailments.
Then they look over the other problems
they could have been charged for.
One man sits near a bare table
in the corner. He’s combed his
thinning hair carefully into
a sort of wave, and he rubs
the skin under his eyes
as if holding in a headache. His
foot jiggles in a nervous tic
several times before he opens
his cell, pushes a button,
and leaves a message filled
with instructions for someone
who has yet to make it to the office.
Then he stares at the carpet
like he’s deciphering a map.
Michael Neal Morris has published short stories, poems, and essays in a number of print and online venues. He most recent books are naked and Recital Notes, Volume I. Collections of his work are listed at Smashwords and Amazon. He lives with his family just outside the Dallas area, and teaches at Eastfield College.
Monk Notes: http://mnmwrite.blogspot.com/
Walking It Off: http://mnmwalking.blogspot.com/
This Blue Monk: http://bluemonkwrites.tumblr.com/