We Made That Call

On the CT scan as

blood spilled over

your ventricles

to the surgeons

regarding emergent

interventions

before we rushed

you out of one room

into another

to pharmacologists

as lines flowed

with medications

so easily we made

those calls but

in the last one

I still hear the break

in your wife’s voice

when she asks

if she will ever

be able to see

you again

in those moments

it is hard to tell her

that I have seen

and cared for

hundreds of

stroke patients

when outcomes differ

and none of them

are her husband

yet I start the

drive home

dial her number

talk for miles and

miles on end

knowing that

minutes can

determine

lifetimes

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