In all our sanctuaries we sit at risk

Dying Aside


She’s 95
and in a side room

with tubes up her nostrils
and eyes without iris.

Death can be pain-free these days –
shrieking no longer on the menu.

Only she pants
like a woman in labour

snatching at the air
as the waves consume her.

The door
stands open.

She hears the nurses chat
and their hot feet patter

up and down the corridor.
Higher and higher the waves.

Alone, aside,
she’s a gasping cadaver

a few sucked breaths
from completion.

Rogan Wolf
Autumn 2009