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At the Doctor’s Office

My father will begin again. He has bought

a juicer and a book on integrative health.

Here, with the doctor as witness,

my father swears to his body,

on his body, the all of his life.

This is his new start.

The doctor remains silent—

after all, what can one say to the dead?

A shot of insulin   ?

Two pills before bed  ?


I’m sorry

as though he forgot

to write the prescription, as though

the insurance was declined:

I’m sorry—

He presses the stethoscope to the stale echo of him.

What can one say?

from ErouFind more by Maya Phillips at the library

Copyright © 2019 Maya Phillips
Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC on behalf of Four Way Books.

Published in Maya Phillips Poems

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council, a State-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this (publication, website, exhibit, etc.) do not necessarily represent those of the Idaho Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.