Here is a body that blackens
In white light: cells devour sugar there
And lesions in the bone
Light up an ocean of regrets.
Every marker darkens fast.
The master at the pump is a wizard
Of sorts: his footwork is quick
And he has perfected
The art of emptiness: he blends it with a mix
Of tenderness and bonhomie and feeds it to you drop by drop
Until the best of you is washed away
In nightly floods of yellow sweat
And bone-infected blood.
Congratulations, friend! You are black and blue
From head to toe, but the doctor
Calculates his kindness
In a professional way
And begins every visit by saying
How you feeling today, buddy?
Your throat burns and your gums are swollen.
Your tongue is a bolus of thick bile.
When you smile, the skull you wear around your grief
Reveals the beast at bay.
Lips drawn tight. Eyes on fire. Skin the color of bleeding slag.
Every muscle in your body harbors grief.
There is no place to hide. The cancer finds you everywhere,
In your liver, in your bowels, in your lungs, in your brain.
How you feeling today, buddy? You have no answer finally.
You are too weak to walk. You are too tired to speak.
Feverish and pale, you sit and tremble in a freezing wind
That only you can feel.