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Old 12-20-2002, 12:43 AM
Michael Creagan Michael Creagan is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Claremont,CA USA
Posts: 54

One of my favorite poems was published in this week's National Review, and I wanted to post it here. Jeffrey Hart is the poetry editor of the Review, and although only 26 poems are published a year, he is partial to poems in rhyme and meter. Payment is several copies of the magazine and $100.

In The Hospital; Watching People Die

At first, I expected them to go in anger,
Or fear and trembling maybe, or raving with fever.
But there is no desperate calling on God or the devil
To fetch them one more time from out of trouble,
Nor do they seem to be thinking of the Hell or Heaven
Our elders warned us of when we were children.
Their hands are quiet and are not reaching at air
For something to hold onto, someone dear.
No, in fact, they seem not at all worried,
Only disappointed, and very, very tired.

[This message has been edited by Michael Creagan (edited December 19, 2002).]
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Old 12-20-2002, 01:09 PM
Len Krisak Len Krisak is offline
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 539


I'm a bit confused. Is that your poem?
Or should I recognize it as someone else's?

I read Hart about a year ago, and he said
he very definitely did NOT want people to start
sending in poems--all work would be solicited,which in practice seems to have ended up meaning
all work would be by Daniel Epstein or Richard
O' Connell.

Still confused, but cheerful,
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Old 12-20-2002, 02:12 PM
Michael Creagan Michael Creagan is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Claremont,CA USA
Posts: 54

My poem. I didn't realize Hart wanted only solicited poetry. Yes, Epstein appears frequently in the magazine.
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Old 12-23-2002, 09:01 AM
Roger Slater Roger Slater is online now
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: New York
Posts: 13,759

Congrats! That's quite a credit. I wasn't aware you worked for less than $20K per poem, but this cheaper gig certainly comes with a ton of prestige. Apropos the poem, it's good but does not accord with my own, more limited observations of watching people die. The people I have watched were a good deal more than disappointed and tired, but acted more like Dylan Thomas wanted his father to act. Angry as hell... and frightened. But then, I frequently disagree with what I read in the National Review. Well done!
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Old 01-01-2003, 03:09 AM
Robert J. Clawson Robert J. Clawson is offline
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 3,404

I find this excellent work. It's a personal take. So be it: it's beautifully expressed. I especially like the subtlety of your rimes.

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Old 01-01-2003, 10:15 AM
Golias Golias is offline
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Lewisburg, PA, USA
Posts: 1,428

Wonderful work, Mike.

I know that you, as an ER doc, have observed many and many a patient expire, so I take your description as representative, and hopeful. May we all go so gentle, especially if old and tired.

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