2018 Hippocrates Prize for Poetry and Medicine

By beda 15/04/2018

My entry has been "Commended"


When he got poorly, I didn’t know he was dying.
My dad never ailed, he was nearly a giant.

I found him in a grey room. He was carved of wood,
sunken and hollow, lined in deep whorls.

He looked up and tried to smile,
but it was too hard.

He’d sunk to the depths of the deepest ocean,
I could see it in his eyes: bottomless blue.

I sat next to him and our hands touched;
his cool and papery, the knuckles large.

Those hands that healed now shook,
hands that cured were fluttering wings.

We’d had silences before that said everything -
- this dying said nothing.

I looked for something true that goes on forever.
My eyes blurring the horizon where the beginning ends.
I never did get to tell you: I love you.

It sounded too much like goodbye.