Sunday, August 10, 2014

Laura Davies Foley: "Sophie"

I need to go to the bathroom. Help me!
Sophie cries, her bent body tense,
contorted like a fist beneath the sheets.

I find a nurse in the hallway.
Sophie just went, she says, exasperated,
vanishing into someone else's room.

I return, tell the patient to relax, lie back.
Now she's calling for Arthur.
My son! I need him! I am dying.

Maybe he'll be here soon, I say,
and: It's okay to be alone.
Then I place my hand beneath hers

and she grips it tightly, releases, grips, releases,
her hand pulsing in mine like a heartbeat.
Finally, she sleeps.

The next day when I enter, I see her
seeing me, her transforming smile.
I sit holding her hand, she, holding mine.

"Sophie" by Laura Davies Foley, from The Glass Tree. © Harbor Mountain Press, 2012. Presented here by poet submission. (Congratulations to Laura on the July publication of Joy Street, out from Headmistress Press.)

Art credit: "Holding an Elderly Woman's Hand," photograph by Sarah Broadmeadow-Thomas (originally color).

1 comment :

  1. What a subtle, gentle poem. It broke my heart in the best possible way and I found myself reading and re-reading, wondering how you'd done it..."Sophie" - it's lovely.


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