Wednesday, March 12, 2014

I should tell you.

exactly when is it a good time
to ruin your life?

or rather

life as you know it?

the one filled with hurdles, yes
but still that far away uncertainty
that we all share when it comes to embracing
the inescapable fate that we all must someday face?


when might you suggest
I bring up these facts that I am holding close to my chest?

the ones that will snatch you from your loved ones
like a ruthless thief
and pry you away from your future hopes and dreams?

is now a good time?
or would you prefer I come back later?
tv muted or off?
lights on or would sunlight somehow make it feel 
less awful 
and unnatural?
shall I tell you on an empty stomach?
or a full one instead?
or not bother with any of these trivial things
and jump right in and tell it all?

your life is about to change
and just maybe--
no more than maybe--

tell me
would offering you a blissful weekend 
before you walk into your new normal be better?
would offering you that be empathic?
or unethical?
or cruel?

or what?

I'm asking you
because I don't know
I don't

and yes, I do know
that I should tell you
and that I must tell you
but I also should tell you
that I've seen people wade those waters
not just the ones like you
but the ones who love the ones like you

but I know I should tell you
but when? 
when would you recommend
that I shatter your world?

after I speak 
the tranquil sea of your life will split
one half will be B.C. -- before cancer
and everything else consumed by the deafening white noise
of A.D.--after diagnosis.

and no

this isn't the kind that can be knocked into remission
with good family support
or aggressive drug regimens
or fancy juicing machines


it's the kind that you see
and then say


because I know I should tell you
of course I know I should tell you
but please tell me, what time is best?
what might you suggest?

'cause see I keep asking myself
and my answer is never


even though I should tell you
that it can't be that


Now playing on my mental iPod. . . . 



  1. Got to be the hardest thing about being a doctor.

    1. yeah. the human part embodies the best and the worst aspects of it all.

  2. Having sat in the other chair, I can tell you it's not when but how.

  3. Man, oh man! You are on fire. This is excellent. I don't know how you do it.


  4. Wow! It can never be easy. Thank you for all you do.

  5. If I ever have to be told, I want you to tell it. Please know that I keep you in my prayers, always.

    ..much is required.


"Tell me something good. . . tell me that you like it, yeah." ~ Chaka Khan

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