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Respite care in emotional Hospice

I pushed the button
to get another hit from
the morphine drip
while phlegm rattled
in my chest

the hospice staff
had me piled down
with blankets
which made
the ache from
my bloodless veins
a little more focused

And I lay there,
basking in comfort
that smelled of rot
waiting for the pain
to end, day to end,
life to end, same as
every day since
you chewed
my heart out
with rat teeth
and loverís tongue.

The all-enduring agony
is bearable when the
staff is there to help you die

But you visited.
For respite.
Brought me flowers.
Opened the window
and made the sun shine
my pitted face.

Helped me
out of my sweat-sour sheets
so that you could sit at my side
with a semi-hard puffing
up the zipper in your pants.

For respite.

The morphine drip
beeped when you took it out
but you knew what you were doing

And when you left,
you felt better for
delivering mercy to
those less fortunate

you felt (respite)
good as I withered
in your sun

I could see you brighten
like a psyche vampire,
when we talked about tacos
and candy bars, and
all the stupid shit that
made us a healthy couple

before I went on deathwatch

before you locked the door
and ran like a coward in the
face of my need

before you left me
in a cemetery with
the ghosts, so that I
wouldn't have far to go
when my mind caught up
with my lost soul

But now.
You head for the door,
for the very last time,
and smile that
smile that made me so
bombed with schoolgirl cunt-lust
that I felt sick when the butterflies
tickled.

Fuck, how I loved you.
How I still love you.

I shake on the edge of the bed
too weak to lie back
or get the morphine back in;
too depleted from your respite
to try to go in peace

and my husk of a body
falls to the floor

I can hear a death rattle
as my gums scrape the
bleach-stained linoleum
and Iíd keen
but the
gutting agony
stole my last breath

I can hear slow sirens as you
walk away
a bounce in your step
because you
gave a dying woman
a bit of respite

because you were
kind enough
to leave me
lying on the floor;

my chalk outline
cradles your
fading shadow for

a final moment

of relief
Written by Betty
Published
All writing remains the property of the author. Don't use it for any purpose without their permission.
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