he spoke about food for the soul
as if it were a bucket fit
for being filled with something
tangible like cold clean
water pumped deep from a well
and therefore capable
of being poured out or carelessly
spilled i suppose.
and as i strolled the spotless halls
at st clare’s hospital
the air heavy with a sickly sweet
scent of disinfectant
i had no idea what words like those
were meant to convey
on my way to his room with a neatly
folded copy of the post.
with shades pulled closed i kept
a silent vigil by the bed
so he wouldn’t be alone and when
those final labored
breaths came thick through cracked
and swollen lips he placed
his hand in mine until there was
nothing left to hold.