Thursday, April 12, 2012

He Didn't Know

In honor of National Poetry Month, here is my poem "He Didn't Know":

He Didn't Know

The far end of the canyon
took hours to reach.
Coming down the trail,
we saw a man
lying on his back—
we ran to him and
saw his right leg
bloated, purple, shining—
looking not like
a leg at all
anymore.
He opened his eyes,
looked at us
and between
tiny breaths,
simply said,
“Rattlesnake”.
My companion ran
to get help
while I stayed
but
we all knew.
He had been
vomiting already.
He whispered,
“I’m going to die.
I didn’t know
today was my
last day.
I didn’t know
I was going to
die today.
I didn’t know.
I
didn’t
know.”

©JEF 1992

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