Outpatient

The pen the doctor used

to sign Jake’s hospital release

 

was heavy as a judge’s pen

freeing a man from prison

 

though not from the shackles

of parole.  As Violet wheeled him

 

to the hospital van, the morning

sunlight seemed unusually bright,

 

their weary eyes wincing

like an infant’s in a stroller.

 

Unbeknownst to the other,

each mused the hollow meaning

 

of “out,” the “out” forever welded

to the implacable steel of “patient.”

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Larry D. Thomas


Jake & Violet

(Terlingua, Far West Texas)


an rhp electronic chapbook

 

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