Prasham Dave is a medical student in the Class of 2018 at the University of Ottawa
Sunken eyes my burden and a blazing smile my shield,
My patient burned under baleful fluorescence—purified en blanc.
My breaths were shallow. His shallower still.
I was haggard and he was in shambles,
I was shuffling and he was frozen,
I was ash and he was a husk.
Swarming into our sterile room, steel eager and arrogant,
This was his broken olive branch, rosary bead chance.
We undid his bindings, taut and distended,
Spilling humours putrid and vile with no origin to be found.
We sealed him shut, inferno unabated.
Spent, he burnt out.
A whispered condolence, a thoughtless prayer,
My pager beeped.
How would the next fare?