The Cancer Sonnets Series
Candle Power in Intensive Care
The unction cools my brow, the candle shines
and forms a line of sacramental brede;
the priest half-chants the text, and makes the signs,
jogging my mind with the redemptive creed
I learned to lisp in church. A night-shift nurse
shows up with rosary beads and borrowed shawl.
I squeeze my morphine pump: the pain is worse.
A gurney clatters down the empty hall.